2004 Regular Session
By: Senator(s) Hewes, Brown, King, Kirby, Moffatt, Nunnelee, Ross, Clarke, Gollott, Doxey, Chamberlin, Browning, Burton, Butler, Carmichael, Chaney, Flowers, Gordon, Harden, Jackson (15th), Jackson (32nd), Lee (47th), Lee (35th), Little, Mettetal, Michel, Morgan, Pickering, Robertson, Thames, Wilemon
A CONCURRENT RESOLUTION MEMORIALIZING THE UNITED STATES CONGRESS TO PROPOSE AN AMENDMENT TO THE CONSTITUTION OF THE UNITED STATES TO PROVIDE A FEDERAL DEFINITION OF MARRIAGE AND TO SUBMIT SUCH CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT TO THE SEVERAL STATES FOR PROPER RATIFICATION.
WHEREAS, during the First Session of the 108th United States Congress, House Joint Resolution No. 56 and Senate Joint Resolution No. 26 were introduced with strong bi-partisan support, giving voice to the deeply held convictions of the vast majority of the American people; and
WHEREAS, the proposed amendment provides in substance that marriage in the United States shall consist only of the union of a man and a woman, and that the United States Constitution, nor the Constitution of any state, nor state or federal law, shall be construed to require that marital status or the legal incidents thereof be conferred upon unmarried couples or groups; and
WHEREAS, in addition to simply stating that marriage in the United States consists of the union of a male and female, the proposed amendment ensures that the democratic process at the state level will continue to determine the allocation of benefits associated with marriage; and
WHEREAS, state legislatures will also retain the power to authorize or prohibit civil unions and domestic partnerships within their respective boundaries; and
WHEREAS, the majority of the efforts to undermine the legal status of marriage are predicated upon constitutional law, specifically the Equal Protection and Full Faith and Credit clauses of the United States Constitution; and
WHEREAS, certain parties are thus manipulating the federal court system to overcome public opinion with respect to marriage, with the openly admitted goal of eventually imposing same-sex "marriage" and civil unions on every state in the nation; and
WHEREAS, this Legislature strongly believes that the proposed amendment is a reasonable response to this attack on our nation's values and its Constitution; and
WHEREAS, the proposed amendment precludes the courts from distorting existing constitutional or statutory law into a requirement that marital status or the legal incidents thereof be reallocated pursuant to a judicial decree; however, it has no impact at all on benefits offered by private businesses and corporations; and
WHEREAS, the decision to seek a constitutional remedy is both significant and necessary; and
WHEREAS, the American people historically have been reluctant to amend the United States Constitution except for the most compelling reasons; although this Legislature shares that view, the rite of matrimony as it has been understood and practiced since time immemorial is so deeply a part of American tradition and our collective values that it requires constitutional status:
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE SENATE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI, THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES CONCURRING THEREIN, That this Legislature memorializes the Congress of the United States to propose language in substantially the following form as an amendment to the Constitution of the United States and submit such amendment to the several states for proper ratification: Marriage in the United States shall consist only of the union of a man and a woman. Neither this Constitution, nor the Constitution of any state, nor state or federal law, shall be construed to require that marital status or the legal incidents thereof be conferred upon unmarried couples or groups.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, That copies of this resolution be provided to the President and the Secretary of the United States Senate, the Speaker and Clerk of the United States House of Representatives, and to each member of the Mississippi Congressional delegation.