INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – Opponents of the marriage amendment have a new reason for optimism after an announcement Thursday by the Republican leader of the state Senate. David Long will now play a bigger role in the marriage debate.
Not quite a week ago, Sen. Long said that the marriage amendment would go to the Judiciary Committee in the state Senate.
That was before changes were made in the Indiana House of Representatives. Now it will go the committee chaired by David Long, the Rules Committee.
Opponents of the marriage amendment won a victory earlier this week in the House of Representatives when the second sentence was removed, the one that bans civil unions.
Now they have reason to believe the Rules Committee will not act to restore the second sentence.
“If I just have to, you know, gaze into the crystal ball,” said Senate Minority Leader Tim Lanane, “I don’t believe it will happen.”
“It would be my preference,” said Long, “that we not amend it in committee.”
And, if no changes are made when the bill gets to the Senate floor, that would mean that a referendum on the proposed permanent ban on gay marriage would be delayed until 2016.
“I think after this session there’s not going to be that much of an appetite to do this,” said Megan Robertson of Freedom Indiana, the organization battling the marriage amendment. “I think, frankly, you can tell that people aren’t as engaged on this issue anymore.”
The Senate Rules committee will conduct a public hearing on the marriage amendment on February 10 or 11th, the first two days when the Senate will consider House bills.