SACRAMENTO, California: On September 24, 2009, John Henning of Love, Honor, Cherish filed a request with the Office of the California Attorney General for an official ballot title on a proposed amendment that he is calling the "Marriage Equality Act." Once the attorney general's office has provided that title, Henning and others will be able to start collecting signatures on this initiated constitutional amendment. The attorney general's office must provide a title no later than November 16. Signatures may then be collected with a signature filing deadline of April 15, 2010.
The proposed amendment has two sections. One section protects religious freedom. The other section says, "To provide for fairness in the government's issuance of marriage licenses, Section 7.5 of Article I of the California Constitution is hereby amended to read as follows: Sec. 7.5.
Only marriage between a man and a woman is valid or recognized in California. Marriage is between only two persons and shall not be restricted on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, gender, sexual orientation, or religion."
The September 24 filing is the culmination of an intense debate that emerged within the LGBT community after Proposition 8 was approved in November 2008 about the best strategy for repealing it, with some groups and large donors very firmly in the "Wait until 2012" camp.
* California Repeal of Proposition 8 (2010)