The North Carolina House and Senate overwhelmingly approved a ballot question that puts a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage in voters’ hands. According to prominent LGBT advocacy groups, the amendment could also ban civil unions and domestic partnership, making it “among the most restrictive in the country.”
By statute, same-sex marriage is already prohibited in the state; however, supporters of the ballot measure want to make sure the courts cannot overturn the ban as they have in other states.
Voters will see the question on the May 2012 primary ballot.
A recent poll by Public Policy Polling revealed that 55 percent of North Carolina voters would vote against the amendment with 30 percent saying they would vote for it.
The ballot language is particularly harsh and sweeping, leading LGBT advocates to fear that it could also be used to prohibit civil unions and domestic partnerships. It reads: “marriage between one man and one woman is the only domestic legal union that shall be valid or recognized in this state.”
If approved, North Carolina would be the 30th state with a constitutional ban on marriage for same-sex couples.