Towson-Area Delegates React to Same-Sex Marriage Vote
In emails to their constituents, Dels. Susan Aumann and Steve Lafferty posted two very different reactions to the bill.
Following the House of Delegates passage last week of a bill to allow same-sex marriage in Maryland, two Towson-area delegates sent two very different emails to constituents.
The Civil Marriage Protection Act now goes to the state Senate, which passed the bill last year and is likely to do so again. Sen. James Brochin, a Towson Democrat, voted for last year's bill.
Lafferty, a Stoneleigh resident and co-sponsor of the measure, said the bill caused much soul-searching among his colleagues in a statement emailed to residents and posted on the Forge Flyer.
On Friday, the House of Delegates passed HB 438, the Civil Marriage Protection Act, recognizing the right of two individuals to be married! I was proud to be a co-sponsor and thrilled to see this pass, putting Maryland on the path to legalizing same-sex marriage. It is a step towards greater justice and equality for those who love each other and wish to commit themselves to one another.
This bill and vote caused all delegates to search our hearts and souls to do what each thought is right. Many of us, while strongly disagreeing with our colleagues, tried to be non-judgmental and respectful. And, for the seven gay legislators, the political is very personal. The passions and tensions have been high for weeks. This past week, however, there were threats and accusations hurled about, more venomous phone calls and emails to legislators and even a threat against one delegate that led to the need for a police escort. State troopers were throughout our building on Thursday and Friday as a precaution! That was pretty shocking.
Now, the bill moves to the Senate for a vote. Since it passed the Senate last year, it is expected to pass again and then be signed into law by the Governor. That will be another remarkable day. However, it is fully expected to then be petitioned to referendum for the voters to decide in November where I hope our decision will be affirmed.
In Aumann's email to constituents, the delegate said Gov. Martin O'Malley supported the Civil Marriage Protection Act solely to boost his national profile.
The Governor is pushing his same sex marriage bill and he knows that by passing it here in Maryland it would look great on his political resume. In fact the Washington Post stated "Perhaps no other O'Malley effort is being watched as closely nationally as same-sex marriage." I find it extremely appalling that O'Malley is using and abusing our state to advance his own national political agenda to the detriment of our Maryland families. For those who are ambivalent, thinking that "this won't affect me," the consequences of passing gay marriage will permeate many aspects of our society. The definition of marriage does not need to be redefined. I support traditional marriage, one man and one woman, and here is why:
- Traditional marriage builds families-mom, dad, and children-and gives hope that the next generations will carry that family into the future.
- In states where marriage has been redefined, activists have implemented a homosexual agenda in the schools to children as young as kindergarten. I am opposed to promoting gay marriage in our public schools and once it is "legal" in this state the curriculum will follow the law.
- The people of Maryland don't need the legislature to tell them what marriage is. Marriage is an institution of the people, not politicians, and the legislature should know better than to try and take the definition of marriage away from them.
This legislation has taken a front seat this session and it is the biggest family issue we are facing, but I know it is not the ONLY issue. I know that the taxes and fees, which the Governor is proposing, are an assault on your way of life and I am in Annapolis fighting for you.