Sunday Milwaukee Media Coverage

Yesterday's Milwaukee Journal Sentinel had lots of coverage about the ban.

Reporter Stacy Forster wrote about the second sentence:

The first sentence of the amendment, defining marriage as a union between a man and woman, is clear. But the second sentence is less so, and it has ignited concern from opponents that it would reach beyond the issue of same-sex marriage to affect senior citizens and health care arrangements.

Supporters say the amendment won't have such an impact and argue those fears are overblown.

As the days tick toward the Nov. 7 election, voters should expect to hear a great deal more about those differing interpretations. Both sides are stepping up efforts to talk with voters about the meaning of the amendment, which would bar the state from recognizing "a legal status identical or substantially similar to that of marriage for unmarried individuals."

And more:

Gundrum said the amendment would allow the Legislature at some point to create a civil union that includes a limited number of benefits, as long as it wasn't "substantially similar" to what's granted to a married couple.

He added that the amendment shouldn't affect what kind of benefits employers might choose to offer their workers.

"The second sentence does and was designed to prevent activist judges from doing what they did in Vermont - dictating that there be . . . marriage under a different name," Gundrum said. "That's all it's intended to do."

Amy Scarr, immediate past chairwoman of the individual rights and responsibilities section of the State Bar of Wisconsin, doesn't believe that was the intent.

"They could have drafted a better amendment, a fairer amendment that didn't cut people clearly out of government-sanctioned relationships and the benefits that come from those relationships, monetary and otherwise," said Scarr, a Madison attorney.

No state has voted down such an amendment on marriage, and opponents are hoping that Wisconsin would be the first - with the help of a full campaign war chest.

Although the article touches on other states, it does not mention any of the far-reaching consequences of similar bans in other states or the many organizations in Wisconsin that oppose the ban because they fear these consequences.

If you'd like to respond to this article and get out more of the facts, please write a letter to the editor.

Meanwhile, the opinion section of the Sunday Journal Sentinel featured three guest op-eds about this issue.

Jose Flores of the Wisconsin Coalition for Traditional Marriage defends the ban.

Fair Wisconsin campaign manager Mike Tate talks about why the ban is wrong and how voters have been reacting to our volunteers as they fan out across the state.

The Journal Sentinel also ran the piece by Wisconsin Public Television's Andy Moore about trying to find an attorney to defend the ban for a mock trial program.


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