Virginia lawmakers ask Congress to ban same-sex marriage

A Virginia house panel unanimously passed a resolution Wednesday urging Congress to propose a constitutional amendment against gay marriages. The resolution, sponsored by Delegate Robert G. McDonnell, seeks an amendment defining marriage as a union between a man and a woman. It also
would render civil unions between same-sex couples and any other recognition of their relationships invalid in the United States. McDonnell said the constitutional amendment is needed to stop gay rights activists from changing marriage laws through the courts. He said recent gay rights victories in the Supreme Court and the Massachusetts supreme judicial court place Virginia's law banning gay marriages in jeopardy. "We have married people, and we have single people," McDonnell said. "Marriage for 6,000 years has been defined a certain way."

The house rules committee passed the resolution without debate. It now moves to the house floor for passage. The federal Defense of Marriage Act already defines marriage as a union between a man and a woman. President Bush said in his State of the Union address on Tuesday he would support a constitutional amendment if courts attempt to give same-sex couples equal access to marriage.

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