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Oregon Marriage Measure 36 (2004)

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Oregon Ballot Measure 36 was on the November 2, 2004 ballot in Oregon as an initiated constitutional amendment. It was approved.

Election results

Measure 36
Approveda Yes 1,028,546 56.63%
Election results from Oregon Blue Book website, accessed December 16, 2013

Text of measure

Ballot title

The official ballot title for Measure 36 was:

Amends Constitution: Only Marriage Between One Man and One Woman Is Valid or Legally Recognized as Marriage[1]

RESULT OF "YES" VOTE: "Yes" vote adds to Oregon constitution declaration of policy that only marriage between one man and one woman is valid or legally recognized as marriage.

RESULT OF "NO" VOTE: "No" vote retains existing constitution without a provision declaring that only marriage between one man and one woman is valid or legally recognized as marriage.[1][2]


The official ballot summary for Measure 36 was:

Amends constitution. Oregon statutes currently provide that marriage is a civil contract entered into in person between individuals of the opposite sex, that is, between males and females at least 17 years of age who solemnize the marriage by declaring "they take each other to be husband and wife." The existing Oregon Constitution contains no provision governing marriage. Currently, the State of Oregon recognizes out-of-state marriages that are valid in the state where performed, unless the marriage violates a strong public policy of Oregon. Measure adds to Oregon Constitution a declaration that the policy of the State of Oregon and its political subdivisions is that "only a marriage between one man and one woman shall be valid or legally recognized as a marriage."[1][2]

Full text

The full text of the constitutional changes enacted by Measure 36 was:

The Constitution of the State of Oregon is amended as follows:

It is the policy of Oregon, and its political subdivisions, that only a marriage between one man and one woman shall be valid or legally recognized as a marriage.[1][2]


Supporters of the measure argued that traditional family values would be under attack as long as same-sex marriage was permitted. Some argued that children raised without a mother and a father would not be emotionally or physically "healthy," and that foster children would be more likely to be placed in same-sex households if homosexual marriage was "normalized."[3]

While certain supporters pointed out that Measure 36 was not about "hate," but about promoting a common good for Oregon, others such as the Traditional Prejudices Coalition took a stronger stance, calling homosexuals a "perverted" part of society and stating that those who do not follow the Bible will "burn in hell."

Some of the other supporters included:

  • State Representative Susan Morgan
  • Stronger Families for Oregon
  • Restore America
  • Representative Wayne Krieger
  • Parents Education Association
  • Senator Roger Beyer
  • Clark Brody Retired Superintendent, Oregon Department of Education
  • Gary George, State Senator
  • Defense of Marriage Coalition
  • Family Research Council
  • City Bible Church
  • New Hope Community Church
  • Cedar Mill Bible Church


This measure was opposed by many people and organizations, including a number of churches and religious groups, who argued that Measure 36 wrongly allowed discrimination to be a part of the Oregon Constitution. Many pointed out that "love" should be the only deciding factor in whether a marriage is considered valid.[4]

Some of those who opposed the measure include:

  • American Friends Service Committee
  • Community of Welcoming Congregations
  • Planned Parenthood of the Columbia Willamette
  • Central Pacific Conference of the United Church of Christ
  • Religious Response Network
  • The National Organization for Women, Corvallis Chapter
  • National Association of Social Workers, Oregon Chapter
  • Administrative Council of the University Park United Methodist Church
  • Outright Libertarians
  • State Rep. Kelley Wirth
  • State Senator Vicki L. Walker
  • The Session of Southminster Presbyterian Church

Campaign finance

$2,455,816 was spent by the "yes" campaign and $2,967,012 was spent by the "no" campaign.[5]


Larger donors to the pro-campaign were:

  • Christian Copyright Licensing, Inc., $410,000.
  • Focus on the Family, $138,364.
  • Gateway Communications, $120,439.
  • Neil Nedelisky, $101,000.


Larger donors to the anti-campaign were:

See also

External links

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