By L.A. Williams, Correspondent
Christian Action League
Marriage means one man and one woman and we want our state Constitution to say so! Why won’t you let us vote on this?
70 percent of N.C. voters
In case Legislators have missed that message before, the latest Civitas Institute poll confirms once again that the majority of Tar Heel voters support a constitutional amendment to protect marriage as an act between a man and a woman.
“The fact that 70 percent of voters want to keep homosexual marriage out of our state isn’t surprising,” said the Rev. Mark Creech, executive director of the Christian Action League. “What is puzzling is why elected officials continue to ignore this fact and leave North Carolina a sitting duck in the crosshairs of gay activists.”
For the sixth consecutive year, legislative leaders have refused to allow a vote on the issue, leaving North Carolina the only southern state without a marriage defense amendment and potentially just one lawsuit away from homosexual weddings.
“Despite the fact that a majority of North Carolinians support the measure and a majority of House members have sponsored House Bill 361, this critical legislation continues to be held up by Speaker Joe Hackney and a handful of powerful special interest groups,” Civitas Institute President Francis De Luca said in a press release announcing the recent poll results.
Conducted last month by Tel Opinion Research of Alexandria, Va., the survey of some 600 likely voters showed the amendment is popular across the board with 68 percent of Democrats and 79 percent of Republicans in support. Even among voters who described themselves as “very liberal,” 52 percent said they would vote for an amendment.
“”Regardless of race, sex, political affiliation or any other way to slice up North Carolina voters, the marriage amendment has universal support,” De Luca added.
A poll commissioned last spring by the N.C. Family Policy Council showed 73 percent in favor of a marriage protection amendment, and one in February 2009 showed support as high as 76 percent. Equally significant perhaps, as November rolls around, are polls showing that 71 percent of voters are more likely to vote for a legislative candidate who supports a Marriage Amendment.
“The percentage of North Carolina voters who support enshrining the definition of marriage as the union of one man and one woman in the State’s Constitution — safely away from the hands of activist judges and legislatures — remains undeniably high,” said Bill Brooks, president of the N.C. Family Policy Council.
The same is true among the rank and file in Raleigh. This year’s Senate bill, SB 272, was sponsored by Sen. Jim Forrester (R-Gaston) and had 22 co-sponsors including five Democrats. Sixty-four House members, a majority of the 120, signed on to co-sponsor its companion, House Bill 361, introduced by Republicans David Lewis (Harnett) and Pearl Burris-Floyd (Cleveland) and Democrats Dewey Hill (Brunswick) and Jim Crawford (Granville). Nonetheless Speaker Hackney referred it first to the Committee on Rules, Calendar and Operations of the House — a dead-end committee — and then, in case it should somehow come out, added a serial referral to three more.
“This showed us that the Speaker of the House was not only saying ‘no’ to this bill, but ‘never,'” said the Rev. Creech. “Even after 4,000 people attended Return America’s Marriage Rally at the State Capitol on a snowy day in March, legislative leaders kept the bills bottled up.”
Both the House and Senate are set to begin “short session” deliberations on Wednesday, May 12.