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Capps Notes Defeat Of Discriminatory Federal Marriage Amendment

Location: Washington, DC

Capps Notes Defeat Of Discriminatory Federal Marriage Amendment

Applauds Colleagues Who Voted to Reject

Politics of Division and Discrimination

- Today Congresswoman Lois Capps noted the defeat of H.J.Res. 88, the Constitutional Amendment to Prohibit Same Sex Marriages. The proposed amendment failed to garner enough votes to meet the necessary two-thirds requirement to amend the Constitution.

"I'm pleased that this legislation failed to receive the required two-thirds vote for passage and I am proud of my colleagues who voted with me today to reject the politics of division and discrimination and defeat this terrible bill," said Capps. "This Congress should be working together to address the many challenges facing America today, such as ending the tragic war in Iraq, bringing the federal deficit under control and helping Americans cope with record high energy prices. "

Prior to the vote on the Federal Marriage Amendment Congresswoman Capps joined several House colleagues at a rally and press conference organized by the Human Rights Campaign to voice opposition to the Federal Marriage Amendment.

Statement of the Honorable Lois Capps (D-CA)

Press Conference On Federal Marriage Amendment

July 18, 2006

Thank you Tammy. Thank you Joe. And thank you for your leadership on this important issue.

Here we go again. Just two years ago we rejected an identical proposal to enshrine discrimination in our Constitution. This proposal is nothing more than an unnecessary and divisive attack on the gay and lesbian community.

The Constitution exists to protect our rights, not take them away. Yet with this amendment we would be setting one group of Americans apart from their fellow citizens. We would be saying you are less than full citizens. And we would be stripping them of rights they currently enjoy in several states. I support the right of a state or local jurisdiction to give gay and lesbian couples equal marriage rights under the law.

Gay and lesbian couples deserve to have their commitment honored - with the same rights to insurance, health care authority and visitation, adoption and other benefits granted to committed couples. But this amendment is also a bad idea because it keeps Congress from addressing the real challenges facing America, both foreign and domestic.

We should be working together to end the tragic war in Iraq, bring the federal deficit under control or help Americans cope with record high energy prices. Yet the Republican Leadership would rather waste our time with a proposal the Senate just rejected and has NO CHANCE of becoming law.

This simple fact is that this is all about the Republican leadership pandering to its base.

It's about election year politics and that is truly sad when we really have so many more important issues to left untended.

I urge my colleagues to reject this constitutional amendment. And I urge the Republican leadership to get back to the issues that Americans care about. It calls for the discrimination of a group in a document almost exclusively devoted to protecting and expanding American's rights.

I urge my colleagues to reject this constitutional amendment and leave the decision to the states.

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