Thursday, 11 April 2013

Oklahoma House Votes 84-0 in Support of Traditional Marriage

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On April 8 the Oklahoma House of Representatives passed a resolution supporting traditional marriage and the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). The U.S. Supreme Court is currently considering a lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of DOMA, which defines marriage as only between a man and a woman for the purposes of federal business, and the Oklahoma lawmakers want to be on record as endorsing only the traditional definition of marriage. It also wants the High Court to rule in favor of allowing individual states to continue determining their own definition of marriage.

The eight-paragraph resolution declares that “marriage is the building block upon which our society is based,” and that “ the power to regulate marriage is a power reserved to the states that lies within the domain of state legislatures and not with the judicial branch of government.” The resolution also recalls that in 2004 Oklahoma voters passed a state constitutional amendment defining marriage as between a man and a woman, one of 30 states thus far to pass such amendments.

With those standards set, the resolution concludes: “Be it resolved by the House of Representatives … that the Oklahoma Legislature reaffirms its commitment to define marriage as the union of one man and one woman and urges the United States Supreme Court to uphold the Defense of Marriage Act and the right of states to regulate marriage.”

The resolution, which will now be taken up by the State Senate asks that a copy “be distributed to the President and Vice President of the United States and to the Oklahoma Congressional Delegation.”

While the vote was unanimous, Tulsa's NBC news affiliate noted that half the House Democrats, led by Democratic leader Scott Inman and openly homosexual Rep. Kay Floyd of Oklahoma City, walked out of the chamber instead of voting. The other half of the Democratic contingent joined all the Republican state representatives to vote to support traditional marriage.

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