Freedom to Marry Files for SSM Referendum in Ohio


With this move, perhaps gay marriage activists will finally drop their complaint that putting marriage to a vote of the people is wrong? This makes the second state they are doing so, after all (Maine was the first):

A proposed constitutional amendment to undo Ohio’s 2004 same-sex marriage ban will be submitted today to Attorney General Mike DeWine.

The Freedom to Marry Coalition expects to file more than 1,700 signatures of registered Ohio voters; 1,000 valid signatures are required in the first step of placing a constitutional issue before Ohio voters this fall or possibly next year.

The proposal would change the Ohio Constitution — amended in 2004 to block same-sex marriage — to say that the state and political jurisdictions define marriage as “a union of two consenting adults, regardless of gender.”

... Phil Burress, of the Cincinnati-based group Citizens for Community Values, said that if same-sex marriage supporters put the issue on the ballot this fall “they can kiss (President Barack) Obama goodbye.” Burress’ group was instrumental in passing the 2004 amendment defining marriage as between a man and woman, an issue credited by some with helping President George W. Bush to win a second term.

“I guess they’re feeling their oats because seven states have same-sex marriage,” Burress said. “ They’re going to have their hands full. We’re prepared to meet them on the field of battle.” -- The Columbus Dispatch


  1. Good news
    Posted March 2, 2012 at 12:44 pm | Permalink

    Judges can't decide what the man woman union is, neither can a group of people. They can only decide on laws and legal definitions.
    The ONE-human-being, who finally has all his organs and chromosomes has a name; its marriage.

    Do all the dancing you want.
    There is only one way to make the ONE-human-being. And a reasonable society has to name it!

  2. Barb Chamberlan
    Posted March 2, 2012 at 12:50 pm | Permalink

    Tim Hagan, former Cuyahoga County commissioner, Democratic candidate for governor in 2002 and co-chairman of the campaign, called this “the most-significant civil-rights act since 1964."

    Have to hand it to the opposition. They're not afraid to display their ignorance or arrogance.

  3. John Noe
    Posted March 2, 2012 at 2:00 pm | Permalink

    This was the great thing about putting marriage on the state ballots years ago. By making it an amendment no judges or legislatures could undo it. Only the people decide.
    So now in the second state the other side wil have to respect the democratic process. I agree with the writer in the article. If they get this on the ballot then Obama loses Ohis which is a key battleground state.

  4. M. Jones
    Posted March 2, 2012 at 2:40 pm | Permalink

    Very sad day come November for SS"m" Extremists. All the political money spent and wasted that could help the needy rather than push their failed agenda at the ballot box. The people have spoken in 32 states, and said "NO" to SS"m".

  5. Zack
    Posted March 2, 2012 at 3:49 pm | Permalink

    Ohio of all places? Listen I know they're a swing state but they very conservative compared to the rest of the country. Good luck with that one.

  6. Zack
    Posted March 2, 2012 at 3:49 pm | Permalink

    they are very*

  7. Randy
    Posted March 2, 2012 at 4:26 pm | Permalink

    I hope they put it on the ballot. This way, Ohio will most likely be a loss for Obama and that could be the end of Obama once and for all. Kill two birds with one stone.

  8. Little man
    Posted March 2, 2012 at 5:15 pm | Permalink

    This - - “a union of two consenting adults, regardless of gender” includes brother and sister! And why only 'two', if procreation is not its basis?

  9. GZeus
    Posted March 2, 2012 at 7:10 pm | Permalink

    Once again little man: Not brother and sister because incest (and bestiality) remains illegal. Only 2 people because all our marriage/divorce laws are written for 2 people.

  10. GZeus
    Posted March 2, 2012 at 7:11 pm | Permalink

    * and polygamy also remains illegal

  11. Posted March 2, 2012 at 9:06 pm | Permalink

    I hope we can reach out to the churches in Ohio.

  12. Jason jackson
    Posted March 2, 2012 at 10:26 pm | Permalink

    GZ-- That's not what he's asking. He's asking for a principle that explains why the things you mentioned should stay illegal.

    I could just as easily say: not 2 men because all our laws are man-woman. He's asking the difference.

  13. olivia
    Posted March 3, 2012 at 12:09 am | Permalink

    In this case, two wrongs will make a right.

  14. The.Truth
    Posted March 3, 2012 at 8:26 pm | Permalink

    This amendment will benefit from asking if marriage should be extended to same gender couples. That is a much more limited question than asking should marriage be defined as between 1 man and 1 woman. That is the question that has always been asked, which leaves every conceivable alternative open.

    When you ask if marriage should be extended to same gender couples it gains several percentage points in the polls.

  15. Louis E.
    Posted March 3, 2012 at 8:36 pm | Permalink

    It makes rather clear that the essential nature of marriage (to unite male to female) is under attack by the referendum,I would hope it will LOSE voters at the polls.

  16. LolaMontez
    Posted March 9, 2012 at 2:14 am | Permalink

    As an Ohioan, I don't think this has much of a chance here -- and yes, if you are a Democrat, you should be concerned as to how it might affect voting patterns.

    Tim Hagan has been out of office for years, because he's a clueless loser (with a Hollywood celebritard wife, former Star Trek actress) and the voters rejected him (several times). This is a pitiful bid for "legitimacy" on his part.

    Central and Southern Ohio are extremely conservative, and the "blue parts" (Northeastern Ohio) is very traditional, with a large Catholic population.

    @GZeus: yes incest and bestiality are illegal. So was sodomy only a few years ago! it was only decided that anti-sodomy laws were unconstitutional a few years ago.

    Ohio used to ban marriages between first cousins, until relatively recently also. So if it is that kind of "illegality" you mean, it wouldn't take much for some ADULT incestuous couples to plead a very convincing case that they too were in love, and deserved all the "rights" that gay couples had just asked for.

    Polygamy is not recognized as marriage by the state, but I am sure more than a handful of folks (Fundie Mormons, Muslims) live in multiple partner liaisons -- and nobody prosecutes them. I'll bet you could not a single person in jail in Ohio for either polygamy OR adult incest -- I've never even heard of those things being prosecuted -- for all intents and purposes, they are already "blue laws".

    So it would take almost nothing to have the state recognize such relationships, if gay marriage paves the way.

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