Alabama Sanctity of Marriage, Constitutional Amendment 774 (June 2006)

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The Alabama Sanctity of Marriage Amendment, or Constitutional Amendment 774, appeared on the June 6, 2006 primary election ballot in Alabama as a legislatively-referred constitutional amendment, where it was approved. The measure was proposed to define marriage in the state as between one man and one woman.


On January 23, 2015, Judge Callie Granade of the US District Court for Southern Alabama struck down the state's ban on same-sex marriage, saying the ban violated gay and lesbian citizens equal protection and due process rights. Judge Granade said the state failed to provide "rational, much less compelling," arguments connecting the deterioration of "the biological family structure the state wishes to promote" and same-sex marriage. She went on, "The Attorney General does not explain how allowing or recognizing same-sex marriage between two consenting adults will prevent heterosexual parents or other biological kin from caring for their biological children."[1] The decision was stayed until February 9, 2015.[2]

Election results

Alabama Amendment 774 (June 2006)
OverturnedotOverturned Case:Searcy v. Strange 
Yes 697,591 81.18%

Text of the amendment

(a) This amendment shall be known and may be cited as the Sanctity of Marriage Amendment.[3]

(b) Marriage is inherently a unique relationship between a man and a woman. As a matter of public policy, this state has a special interest in encouraging, supporting, and protecting this unique relationship in order to promote, among other goals, the stability and welfare of society and its children. A marriage contracted between individuals of the same sex is invalid in this state.

(c) Marriage is a sacred covenant, solemnized between a man and a woman, which, when the legal capacity and consent of both parties is present, establishes their relationship as husband and wife, and which is recognized by the state as a civil contract.

(d) No marriage license shall be issued in the State of Alabama to parties of the same sex.

(e) The State of Alabama shall not recognize as valid any marriage of parties of the same sex that occurred or was alleged to have occurred as a result of the law of any jurisdiction regardless of whether a marriage license was issued.

(f) The State of Alabama shall not recognize as valid any common law marriage of parties of the same sex.

(g) A union replicating marriage of or between persons of the same sex in the State of Alabama or in any other jurisdiction shall be considered and treated in all respects as having no legal force or effect in this state and shall not be recognized by this state as a marriage or other union replicating marriage.

Changes to the Alabama Constitution

The passing of Alabama Sanctity of Marriage, Constitutional Amendment 774 added Amendment 774 to the Alabama Constitution.

Key facts

The passage of the amendment made Alabama the 20th state to adopt a constitutional marriage amendment.

The amendment won in every county.[4]

It became the 774th amendment to the Alabama Constitution.[5]

Campaign contributions

  • According to reports, no money was spent for the campaign either for or against the measure leading up to the election.[6]

Related measures

Voters in 30 states have approved legislatively-referred constitutional amendments or initiated constitutional amendments prohibiting same-sex marriages at the ballot box. The first constitutional prohibition was in 1998, and the latest one occurred in May 2012. Most of these amendments define marriage along the lines of a "union of one male and one female."


The following constitutional bans were approved by voters, but later overturned by courts:


Cases overturning the following bans have been appealed to higher courts and are currently stayed:


The following constitutional bans were approved by voters and have been upheld or not overturned by courts:


The following constitutional bans were defeated by voters:

Note: Arizonans defeated a measure in 2006, but approved one in 2008, which has been overturned.

See also

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External links