Two Republican Party delegates had their suggestions on amending the party’s official position on marriage equality rejected this week.
As reported by the Washington Wire, Republicans drafting the party’s platform in Tampa, Florida, rejected the two proposed of amendments, though other delegates offered some agreement and support.
The first amendment was proposed by Rhode Island delegate, Barbara Fenton, who suggested doing away with government-sanctioned marriage altogether and replacing it with civil unions for both LGBT and heterosexual couples.
Ms. Fenton is a Roman Catholic and personally opposed to marriage equality. She said: “those are my religious beliefs and this country was founded on the separation of church and state.”
She was backed by Themis Klarides, a member of the Connecticut House of Representatives, who said: “I don’t think this diminishes or degrades marriage. I think that these terms have been mixed for so long that we’ve lost the definition between civil and religious.”
Tony Perkins, President of the Family Research Council and Louisiana delegate was against the measure, stating: “This would move us away from a party that recognises the benefits that marriage extends to a society.
“We recognise nature, we recognise history, that nature is the union of one man and one woman.”
The committee went with Mr Perkins, ultimately, defeating the amendment on a voice vote.
As reported by Andrew Grossman, the Nevada delegate, Pat Kerby, suggested another amendment: “He couched his proposal in strategic terms, saying that opposition to recognition of same-sex unions gave ‘Hollywood and the media’ the opportunity to paint the [Republicans] in a negative light.”
Mr Kerby said: “I really, really, really, really don’t want Obama to win this election. And I believe this is an issue that will be a tipping point and that we can take this stance and still keep our commitment to the institution of marriage.”
However, other delegates drew his attention to the success on referendums prohibiting marriage equality, and the amendment was rejected.