Congressional delegation split on marriage amendment

(February 25, 2004) — (Little Rock-AP) -- Members of Arkansas' congressional delegation agree that marriage should be a union between a man and a woman, but not on whether a constitutional amendment is needed. The delegation's Democrats says federal and state laws already protect the sanctity of marriage. Representative John Boozman, the only Republican, says he supports President Bush's proposed constitutional change. Bush said yesterday that an amendment is needed to block activist judges and officials from changing the definition of what he termed the "most enduring human institution." A federal law already defines marriage as a union between a man and a woman. Arkansas is among at least 38 states that have approved laws or amendments barring the recognition of gay marriage. Also, a group has submitted a proposed constitutional amendment banning gay marriages and civil unions to the Arkansas attorney general's office for approval for the November general election ballot.