North Carolina Rep. Renee Ellmers has
said she opposes a proposed constitutional amendment to ban gay
marriage in the state.
Ellmers, a conservative Republican and
tea party favorite, says the measure approved last month by lawmakers
and sent to voters is too aggressive.
Voters in May will decide whether to
bar the state from legalizing marriage, civil unions and possibly
domestic partnerships for gay and lesbian couples.
Ellmers' office told Raleigh-based News
Observer that she objects to gay marriage but won't vote in
favor of the amendment because it would also ban civil unions.
“Congresswoman Ellmers has always
believed that marriage is a sacred institution and is defined as the
union between one man and one woman,” Tom Doheny, a spokesman for
Ellmers, told the paper. “That is why she has and will continue to
protect and defend marriage at the federal level.”
Ellmers “finds nothing wrong with
people being granted” civil unions.
“As a voter, she would vote against a
piece of legislation that would add a ban on civil unions to the
protection of marriage since they are two different issues and should
be dealt with separately,” he added.
R. Clarke Cooper, executive director of
gay GOP group Log Cabin Republicans, said Ellmers' views were in line
with those of most North Carolinians.
“It is one thing to disagree about
marriage,” Cooper said in a statement, “but banning all
recognition of gay and lesbian families crosses the line for many
North Carolinians who want to see their gay neighbors, friends and
family members treated with respect and dignity.”
oppose North Carolina gay marriage ban amendment.)