NOM BLOG

National Organization for Marriage Urges Rhode Island Senators to Reject Legislation Redefining Marriage

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: April 23, 2013
Contact: Elizabeth Ray or Jen Campbell (703-683-5004)


National Organization for Marriage

"Rhode Island voters deserve the right to vote on marriage just as voters in 35 other states have been able to do." — Brian Brown, NOM president —

Providence, RI — The National Organization for Marriage Rhode Island today urged state Senators to reject legislation redefining marriage and instead allow voters to determine the definition of marriage in Rhode Island. The Senate Judiciary Committee today passed two bills redefining marriage (SB 38, HB 5015) but narrowly failed to pass legislation allowing voters to determine the issue (SB 708).

"Marriage has served Rhode Island well since statehood and policymakers should not act unilaterally to redefine this foundational institution of society," said Brian Brown, NOM's president. "Rhode Island voters deserve the right to vote on marriage just as voters in 35 other states have been able to do. We urge Senators not to redefine marriage and instead let the people vote."

The Senate Judiciary Committee defeated SB 708 on a 5-6 vote while passing SB 38 and HB 5015 redefining marriage. A recent statewide public opinion survey found that 78% of Rhode Island voters want the right to vote on the definition of marriage in the state.

"Now is the time for Rhode Island citizens to contact state Senators to tell them to let the people vote on marriage," said Scott T. Spear, a member of NOM Rhode Island's Advisory Board. "Rarely do nearly 80% of Rhode Islanders agree on a political issue, but that is the size of the overwhelming majority of voters who want the right to vote on marriage. The issue before state Senators is who gets to decide. We call on them to let the people vote."

NOM asked Rhode Island Senators not to undefine marriage and rip it from its historic roots to child-rearing, warning that when this has happened elsewhere, religious groups, small businesses and individuals have suffered.

"Marriage is intrinsically the union of a man and a woman and has been for thousands of years" Brown said. "When the definition of marriage has been changed elsewhere, we have seen countless examples of people being punished if they do not abandon their deeply-held beliefs that marriage is and can only be the union of a man and a woman. Wedding professionals have been fined, small businesses have been sued, church groups have lost their tax exemptions and religious-based charities have closed down, unable to compromise their beliefs about the true nature of marriage. Rhode Island risks these types of consequences if Senators vote to impose same-sex 'marriage.' The so-called religious liberty protections in SB 38 and HB 5015 are grossly inadequate and provide no protections at all for individuals or small businesses. These misguided bills should be defeated."

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To schedule an interview with Scott T. Spear, Advisory Board member of NOM Rhode Island or Brian Brown, president of the National Organization for Marriage, please contact Elizabeth Ray (x130), [email protected], or Jen Campbell (x145), [email protected], at 703-683-5004.

Paid for by The National Organization for Marriage, Brian Brown, president. 2029 K Street NW, Suite 300 Washington, DC 20006, not authorized by any candidate or candidate's committee. New ยง 68A.405(1)(f) & (h).

16 Comments

  1. Richard
    Posted April 23, 2013 at 6:06 pm | Permalink

    Not going to happen. The Senate Judiciary Committee sends it on for a vote tomorrow by full Senate. All Senate Republicans are on board.

  2. Will Fisher
    Posted April 23, 2013 at 6:32 pm | Permalink

    Will NOM try to primary out all of the GOP Senators?

  3. Posted April 23, 2013 at 8:14 pm | Permalink

    If people of Rhode Island vote for Democrat legislators in their State, when something like this happens they see what their vote got turned into. It is forcing the majority to go with the minority, and it cannot stand in balance for long. Let's see what their opposition does. Rhode Island voters have been through a lot. They are organized.

  4. Richard
    Posted April 23, 2013 at 8:25 pm | Permalink

    Little Man, so sorry to inform. Rhode Islanders ( in the majority) support their legislators.

  5. John B.
    Posted April 23, 2013 at 8:29 pm | Permalink

    The way voters keep electing legislators who support marriage equality, you would think the voters actually supported marriage equality. Erm...

  6. Richard
    Posted April 23, 2013 at 8:53 pm | Permalink

    John B. you are so right. I've spent countless days and nights perplexed as to why it is no politician ever moves from gay marriage supporter to opponent. You are on to something, I think.

  7. Son of Adam
    Posted April 23, 2013 at 9:22 pm | Permalink

    It is way...WAY to early in the game for that to mean anything, Rich.

  8. Son of Adam
    Posted April 23, 2013 at 9:31 pm | Permalink

    During the 1996 race for the Illinois State Senate, President Barack Obama gave statements that expressed an "unequivocal support for gay marriage." Then he opposed it when he ran for President in 2008. Now he supports it again and will continue to do so as long as he gets regular money showers from the homosexual lobby.

  9. Forrest
    Posted April 23, 2013 at 10:04 pm | Permalink

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F7a2y_Vxi7s

  10. Posted April 23, 2013 at 10:58 pm | Permalink

    John B - incorrect and illogical deduction. "The way voters keep electing legislators who support marriage equality, you would think the voters actually supported marriage equality."

    No, we wouldn't think that. Votes are counted at the ballots. Legislators are elected on their stand on many issues, not only SSm. Legislators usually hide their stand on SSm. When legislators flip-flop they don't represent the majority of those who voted for them. Plus, many registered voters might not vote, until they see their legislators flip-flopping. Rhode Island is a small State, in population and in area. Funds from outside can easily affect an election. NOM is only trying to balance those outside influences.

    In essence a State is not sovereign, if outside sources can manipulate its internal politics.

  11. Bobby
    Posted April 24, 2013 at 12:08 am | Permalink

    Little Man - I did not realize that N
    OM is headquartered in Rhode Island. Speaking of Rhode Island. based on 2012 presidential election results, RI is bluer than both ME and MD, both of which approved marriage equality initiatives. If put to the people in RI, equality would win.

  12. Son of Adam
    Posted April 24, 2013 at 1:51 am | Permalink

    "If put to the people in RI, equality would win."

    So why don't they?

  13. Bobby
    Posted April 24, 2013 at 7:43 am | Permalink

    SofA - I don't believe RI holds popular referendums. People can have their voiced heard through their legislators.

  14. Marc Paul
    Posted April 24, 2013 at 10:36 am | Permalink

    Bobby, no use making the point.

    If it Courts who introduce equal rights then it's "activist" judges. If its legislators then they are "thwarting the will of the people". When it's a popular vote, somehow that is a special case and can't ever be repeated or treated in any way as an indication that the wind of change is blowing across all of America.

  15. Posted April 24, 2013 at 1:40 pm | Permalink

    "wind of change"? What about the wind of change in 40 or so States, and some 30 with 1man1woman marriage amendments? Or does only your preferred "wind of change" matter?

    The truth is right before your face, but you only see what you want to see. That is called self-deception, not "wind of change". Baloney, in the vernacular.

  16. Chairm
    Posted April 26, 2013 at 1:06 am | Permalink

    Marc Paul, regardless of the route taken to impose SSM, it is based on the arbitrary exercise of governmental power.

    I say, arbitrary, because this revision to the marriage law has yet to be justified. Even the stated standards of the SSM campaign in RI have been transgressed by this SSM imposition.

    Can you do better in making a sound argument in favor of what you demand of all of society? I doubt it but you might surprise.