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The Voice of the Black Community

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Obama: Amendment One is wrong
President opposes constitutional amendment
 
Published Friday, March 16, 2012 3:12 pm
by Herbert L. White

President Barack Obama is against an N.C. referendum that would recognize marriage between a man and woman exclusively in the state constitution.

"While the president does not weigh in on every single ballot measure in every state, the record is clear that the President has long opposed divisive and discriminatory efforts to deny rights and benefits to same sex couples,” said Cameron French, Obama’s North Carolina campaign spokesman. “That’s what the North Carolina ballot initiative would do it would single out and discriminate against committed gay and lesbian couples and that’s why the president does not support it.”

Amendment One, which is on the May 8 primary ballot, reads: “Marriage between a man and a woman is the only domestic legal union that shall be valid or recognized in this state.” If passed, the amendment would prohibit civil unions, domestic partnerships, and public employee domestic benefits currently for gay and straight couples that don’t meet the standard.

Opponents were quick to praise Obama.

“The president has made clear the importance of protecting all families,” Human Rights Campaign President Joe Solmonese said in a statement. “Amendment One undermines basic human dignity and places families of all types at risk in North Carolina. Voting ‘No’ on Amendment One is critical for maintaining a fair North Carolina.”

The Human Rights Campaign is the nation’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender civil rights organization.

All NC Families, an anti-amendment coalition, backed Obama as well.

“We applaud the president’s opposition to Amendment One,” said Jeremy Kennedy, PANC’s campaign manager. “The president’s support is proof that Amendment One, which could take health care away from children, put domestic violence laws in jeopardy, in addition to hurting all unmarried couples in North Carolina, has far-reaching, negative consequences."

On March 8, Durham City Council voted 6-0 to support a resolution opposing Amendment One.

We’re in a community in the state where we’re trying to attract jobs and we know many people who, if this amendment were to pass, would be very hesitant to come and work here in North Carolina,” Durham Mayor Bill Bell said. “I’m voting against it, and I think it speaks for itself that my hope, when the vote goes down, you’ll see that Durham County voted overwhelmingly against this amendment.”

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