French introduces measure to strike gay marriage ban

Sen. Hollis French speaks to reporters during a press conference held on Feb. 24, 2014 to announce the introduction of his resolution to allow a constitutional amendment that would remove Alaska’s constitutional ban on same-sex marriage. (Photo by Skip Gray/Gavel Alaska)

Sen. Hollis French speaks to reporters during a press conference held on Feb. 24, 2014 to announce the introduction of his resolution to allow a constitutional amendment that would remove Alaska’s constitutional ban on same-sex marriage. (Photo by Skip Gray/Gavel Alaska)

In 1998, Alaska became the first state to put a ban on same-sex marriage into its constitution. Now, the minority leader in the State Senate wants to get rid of that ban.

Anchorage Democrat Hollis French is introducing a measure to strike the amendment. Federal courts have recently invalidated similar amendments in Utah, Oklahoma, and Virginia. French says Alaska should be pro-active on the issue in light of those decisions.

“We can wait if we all want to wait for the day — and I think the day is coming soon — when the U.S. Supreme Court rules that state prohibitions on same-sex marriage are inconsistent with freedom, with justice, with liberty, and with equality,” said French, who is also running for lieutenant governor. “Better yet, I believe it should be erased by our own actions – by passing this resolution and submitting it to the voters.”

French’s measure faces an uphill battle. Any changes to the state constitution require approval of two-thirds of the Legislature, and then a majority vote of Alaska citizens. On top of that, key members of Senate’s Republican leadership have said they don’t feel there’s enough support for it.

Same-sex marriage isn’t the only gay rights issue up for consideration by the Legislature. The Senate’s Health and Social Services Committee heard a bill that would prohibit discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation for the first time on Monday.

 

Read original story on Alaska Public
French Introduces Measure To Strike Gay Marriage Ban

Comments

comments