California lawmakers urge Congress to reject marriage ban

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The California senate voted Wednesday to urge Congress to reject the Federal Marriage Amendment, which would amend the U.S. Constitution to ban same-sex marriages. By a 21-13 vote, the senators approved a resolution by openly gay assemblyman Mark Leno (D-San Francisco) that urges Congress to reject any legislation that would "prohibit or restrict" the rights of same-sex couples. Last month the U.S. Senate scuttled the proposed amendment, but supporters said they wouldn't give up. A little over a week later, the House of Representatives approved legislation that would bar federal judges from ordering states to recognize same-sex marriages that took place in other states.

California state senator Sheila Kuehl (D-Santa Monica) said approval of an amendment banning gay marriages would go against a tradition of changing the Constitution to "further protect the rights, liberty, and freedom of the American people." The resolution returns to the state assembly, which adopted a slightly different version of the measure in June.

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