WATCH: Oklahoma Democrats Walk Out on Antigay Vote

Sixteen democratic state representatives refused to vote on a resolution reiterating the state's constitutional definition of marriage as between a man and a woman.

BY Sunnivie Brydum

April 10 2013 5:34 PM ET

More than half of Oklahoma's 29 House Democrats walked out of the chamber rather than vote on a resolution to affirm the state's definition of marriage as union of one man and one woman Tuesday, reports the Associated Press.

Oklahoma voters passed a constitutional amendment banning marriage equality in 2004, but that wasn't a strong enough condemnation for Rep. Bob Cleveland. Cleveland says he authored the resolution to reaffirm the state's exclusionary definition in light of President Obama's support for marriage equality and the two related cases heard by the Supreme Court in March. 

The state House voted 84-0 in favor of the resolution Tuesday, when Cleveland told Oklahoma City's KOCO TV that he received no negative feedback from fellow representatives.

"I have not heard from any of my colleagues," said Cleveland. "And there was some people that didn't vote, but they- I don't know whether they didn't vote for a particular reason, or they just weren't there."

But the state's only out gay legislator, Democratic Rep. Kay Floyd, says her party's silence spoke louder than words ever could have. 

"My colleagues that introduced this resolution are only interested in focusing our legislature on issues which were resolved last year," Floyd told KOCO. "I actually believe walking out was a bigger statement because I did not justify the resolution with a vote and a debate."

Every House Republican was joined by 13 Democrats in voting for the resolution, which, even if it passes the Senate, does not have the weight of law, according to AP.

Watch KOCO's report on the vote below.

 

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