Kentucky lawmakers block votes on antigay amendment
The Kentucky house, in a tumultuous session on Tuesday, blocked repeated attempts to force a vote on a proposed constitutional amendment to ban same-sex marriages. Supporters pledged to keep pushing for a vote to get the amendment to the November ballot. The general assembly has four days left in which to pass bills.
"We're going to continue this fight with every ounce of energy we have until we adjourn on Monday," said Rep. Jeff Hoover, the minority floor leader, who led two parliamentary charges to force a vote.
The senate passed the proposed amendment. An affirmative vote in the house would send it to the ballot. If ratified by voters, the Kentucky constitution would be amended to define marriage as a union between one man and one woman.
A Kentucky statute already prohibits same-sex marriages. Proponents of an amendment say it would cement the ban against court challenges. Andrea Hildebran, executive director of the antiamendment Kentucky Fairness Alliance, hailed the blocked vote. "It's wrong to discriminate against anyone in our society, and I'm glad that was the ultimate message out of today," she said.