The Massachusetts legislature today voted down a discriminatory constitutional amendment that would have halted marriage equality in the Commonwealth. Same sex couples have been allowed to marry in Massachusetts since May 2004.
People For the American Way President Ralph G. Neas issued the following statement:
“Today’s vote is a victory for Massachusetts families and for all Americans who value equality. The legislature, the elected representatives of the people of Massachusetts, defeated this initiative in accordance with the state Constitution. They made a wise judgment not to subject Massachusetts to a divisive and discriminatory ballot initiative designed to strip away the rights of thousands of citizens.
“Same-sex couples have been getting married in Massachusetts for three years now, and, despite a wave of hysterical predictions from the far right, the sky hasn’t fallen. Instead, more people who love each other have equality under the law, and more families have the basic protections they need and deserve. Churches remain, and will always remain, free to preach whatever they believe on the subject, and to make their own decisions about which marriages to bless religiously, but the government has lived up to its promise of equal rights under law.
“The fact that opponents of marriage equality couldn’t muster the support of even 50 out of 200 legislators is a clear sign that the people of Massachusetts have embraced marriage equality. They are leading America toward full equality.
“We congratulate GLAD, MassEquality, other local, state, and national equality advocates, and the thousands of individuals who worked so tirelessly to achieve this victory.”