Thursday, October 23, 2003 / Latest News / Northeast / Court decision may change vote on anti-gay marriage amendment
By Jennifer Peter, Associated Press, 10/22/2003 17:24
"BOSTON (AP) As gay advocates prepared for the first-ever Statehouse hearing on legalizing same-sex marriages, key lobbyists said Wednesday that legislative support could be building for a bill that would do the exact opposite. The House and Senate are scheduled to meet in joint session Nov. 12 to consider a constitutional amendment that would define marriage as a union between one man and one woman an initiative that was defeated last year by more than half of the state's 200 lawmakers. But an impending decision by the state's highest court, which many believe could set a national precedent on the legalization of gay marriage, may be shaking up the Legislature, according to Arline Isaacson of the Massachusetts Gay and Lesbian Political Caucus. ''Legislatures are very nervous about this because of the (Supreme Judicial Court) decision,'' Isaacson said. ''It could change everything. It makes it less abstract.'' The Judiciary Committee is holding a public hearing Thursday on legislative initiatives to legalize gay marriage and civil union, as well as several other hot-button social issues, including abortion restrictions, assisted suicide and breast-feeding in public. [wow, breastfeeding in public is a hot button issue right along side assisted suicide and legalizing gay marriage... who knew?! - JC]

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