Legislature Postpones Constitutional Convention Until Next Year
MN Staff
November 13, 2003

The joint Legislature met in Constitutional Convention at two o'clock yesterday afternoon to consider the Constitutional Amendment defining marriage as one-man-and-one-woman.

The session lasted about one minute before Senate President Robert E. Travaglini, who runs constitutional conventions, abruptly postponed all debate until February 11, 2004.

"As Wednesday approached it had become more and more evident that the Legislature did not want to decide on homosexual marriage until other events -- notably a Supreme Judicial Court decision -- forces them to," commented Brian Camenker, President of Parents Rights Coalition. "The only question yesterday was how long they would delay until the next time," said Camenker.

About thirty supporters of the Amendment had come to the State House from around the state and gathered outside the chambers. Two or three gay activists were also spotted in the area.

Everything happened very quickly and there were not any outbursts from either side, as has happened in the past.

According to Camenker, various press reports say that legislative leaders intend to get right to work passing a "domestic partner" package for homosexuals in Massachusetts, which Travaglini favors. This could possibly happen within a few weeks. Several legislators have reported that gay activists have already been lobbying hard and furiously for gay marriage-like legislation.

The President of Massachusetts Citizens for Marriage, Sarah McVay Pawlick, has also pointed out that the MCM Amendment from last year is still in play. She reports that the SJC has advised her that they need extra time to decide her case, which asked the Court to send the Amendment on to this new Legislature inasmuch as the old one violated the state Constitution when it failed to take a vote on the measure.

Ron Crews, president of Massachusetts Family Institute, said he agrees with the decision to postpone a vote on the Amendment until next year. "This is a critical issue," said Crews. "I don't want them to debate it in a hurry; but to debate it, come to a vote, and hopefully, let the voters decide."

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