DFL Judiciary Committee Members Prove Allegiance to Gay Activist Groups

St. Paul, Minnesota (April 4, 2006) Today all five DFL members of the Senate Judiciary Committee voted to oppose a bill that would allow Minnesotans to decide whether their state constitution should be amended to protect marriage. ” For the third year in a row, these senators have denied Minnesota voters the right to decide the future of marriage in our state”, said Jeff Davis, President of Minnesota Citizens in Defense of Marriage (MCDM).

Witnesses testifying in support of the marriage amendment provided compelling evidence that marriage laws are under attack across our nation and that Minnesota’s existing laws would likely not withstand a similar attack. Marriage amendment opponents presented a confusing set of arguments, claiming that Minnesota’s existing laws provided adequate protection for marriage while at the same time saying that amending our state constitution to define marriage would be discriminatory. ” The proposed amendment simply takes how marriage is defined within our current statutes and elevates it to the level of a constitutional amendment so that it can’t be overturned by our state courts”, said Davis. ” If you were to agree with the arguments of our opponents, you would need to conclude that our current laws are both adequate and discriminatory. This makes no sense.”

Today’s defeat of the marriage amendment bill means that Minnesota voters will not have another chance to vote on a marriage amendment until at least 2008. ” This gives gay activists a full two years to work towards redefining marriage in our state”, said Senator Michele Bachmann, R-Stillwater, chief author of the marriage amendment bill. ” Through their actions, DFL state senators have essentially paved the way for gay marriage in Minnesota”, said Jeff Davis.

In an act of compromise, Senator Tom Neuville, R _ Northfield, offered alternative bill language that simply limited the power to define marriage to the state legislature, a nearly identical version of the bill offered by Judiciary Chairman Don Betzold, DFL-Fridley, in 2004 and passed by the committee at that time. But even this comprise bill was voted down by the DFL majority. Senate Judiciary Chairman Don Betzold voted in support of amending the bill with the revised language, but then voted in opposition to approving the bill. ” I wonder if Senator Betzold plans to use John Kerry’s excuse that ‘I voted for the bill before I voted against it'”, said Davis.

Upon the conclusion of the Judiciary Committee meeting, Davis reaffirmed his organization’s commitment to winning the right for Minnesotans to vote on marriage. ” DFL state senators appear to care more about placating deep-pocketed gay activist groups than serving the interests of their constituents”, said Davis. ” Beginning today, we plan to fully commit ourselves to making sure that DFL state senators are held accountable at the ballot box this November.” Davis urged Minnesota citizens who believe in preserving traditional marriage to sign the Marriage Protection Petition available on the group’s website at www.mnmarriage.com.