Arkansas Attorney General Dustin
McDaniel on Friday rejected a proposed initiative to repeal the
state's gay marriage ban, saying it was “misleading.”
Arkansas for Equality submitted the
proposal to repeal the state's 2004 voter-approved constitutional
amendment limiting marriage to heterosexual unions.
“A voter might mistakenly interpret
the repeal of Amendment 83 as having the immediate effect of
sanctioning same-sex marriage,” McDaniel wrote. “Your proposed
ballot title is therefore inherently misleading.”
Before Arkansas for Equality can begin
gathering the 78,133 signatures from registered voters needed to put
the issue on the 2014 ballot, they need the approval of McDaniel's
Judd Mann, co-chairman of Arkansas for
Equality, told the AP that the group felt “like this is a step in
the right direction.”
Mann said that few ballot measures are
approved without rewording and that his group would submit a revised
proposal next week.
Tuesday, an affiliated group submitted a 2016 ballot initiative
which seeks to legalize gay nuptials in Arkansas. Additionally, a
lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of Amendment 83 was filed
earlier in the month.
couples sue for right to marry in Arkansas.)
According to a
Human Rights Campaign (HRC) poll of 600 adults conducted between
June 26 and June 30, 38 percent of Arkansans support marriage
equality, and 55 percent remain opposed.