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Ex-GOP senator denounces gay marriage ban via constitutional amendment

[JURIST] Former US Senator John Danforth [profile] has called [speech transcript] a Republican-sponsored constitutional amendment to ban same-sex marriage [JURIST news archive] "silly," saying the Republican party's stance calls for them to interpret the constitution narrowly rather than expansively. Speaking over the weekend to the Log Cabin Republicans [group website], a group which supports gay rights, Danforth cited prohibition as a previous attempt to use a constitutional amendment to regulate human behavior and noted its failure. Danforth, who also served as the US ambassador to the UN until January 2005, called the proposed amendment another example of how the agenda of evangelical Christians is harming the Republican party.

The US Senate [official website] will vote [JURIST report] this June on the proposed Marriage Protection Amendment [PDF text], which supporters hope will precede any federal court decision allowing same-sex couples to wed. The amendment would need to be passed by a two-thirds majority in both the US House of Representatives [official website] and Senate, and then be ratified by 38 states. AP has more.

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