Twenty-three Republican senators on
Tuesday backed a measure that would constitutionally prohibit gay
marriage in North Carolina, Charlotte-based
gay weekly Q-Notes reported.
The proposed measure would amend the
North Carolina Constitution to ban recognition of any “domestic
legal union” other than a heterosexual marriage.
The question could appear on the 2012
ballot, if approved by lawmakers.
The resolution enjoys the support of 23
GOP senators, including its primary sponsor Senator James Forrester,
who has carried the proposed amendment for the past seven years.
It is the first attempt by Republicans
to ban gay marriage since their successful takeover of both chambers
on November 2. Previously, Democratic leaders have blocked such
The new GOP majority in the Senate is
large enough to approve placing the question on the ballot, but
Republicans will likely need the help of four Democratic members in
“We are definitely concerned that the
new leadership is far more likely to bring up a vote,” Ian
Palmquist, executive director of Equality North Carolina, the state's
largest gay rights advocate, said in November.
A House version of the resolution has
yet to be filed.