State Senator Seeks Ban on Same-Sex Marriage in Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania State Senator John Eichelberger is holding a news conference today to announce the introduction of a bill banning same-sex marriage there, the Philadelphia Inquirer reports:
"Similar measures in the last two sessions of the legislature have failed. Pennsylvania law defines marriage as a union between a man and a woman. But Eichelberger and other proponents of the amendment say writing the ban into the constitution would prevent a judge from overturning the law. Opponents say the measure would enshrine discrimination into the constitution. Amending the constitution requires approval from both the House and Senate in two consecutive two-year sessions before the measure goes to voters for final approval in a statewide referendum."
The Philadelphia Daily News notes that the enviornment in PA makes it much less likely that marriage equality will make it there anytime soon: "...though pundits based here expect a day when gay marriage will gain approval in Pennsylvania - thanks to the overwhelming support for the practice among voters younger than 40 - they say that any real movement could be closer to a decade away because of the state's unique demographic factors. These experts note that Pennsylvania is still one of the three oldest states in the country, with disapproval of gay marriage still running high among seniors. The state is also heavily Catholic, they note, and home to other populations, including conservative religious sects in central Pennsylvania, as well as African-Americans here in Philadelphia, who trend toward higher gay-marriage-disapproval ratings."