Wisconsin Governor Says Marriage Ban Not Needed

Sat. August 9, 2003 12:00 AM by 365gay.com

Racine, Wisconsin - Wisconsin Gov. Jim Doyle says he is opposed to a ban on gay marriage proposed by state Republicans.

The Democratic governor called the legislation "unnecessary."

"Wisconsin state law says that marriage is between a man and woman," Doyle said during a meeting with the Racine Journal Times' Editorial Board.

"I don't understand their (Republicans) deep-seated need to say it over and over and over again."

State law defines marriage as a "legal relationship between two equal persons, a husband and wife." Doyle said that a so-called Defense of Marriage Act is not needed in the state.

State Republicans say the recent US Supreme Court ruling on gay privacy could force the state into recognizing gay marriage without specific legislation banning it. They also say an impending Massachusetts Supreme Court ruling could force the state into recognizing marriages performed in other states.

The Mass court is considering a challenge to that state's refusal to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples. Massachusetts does not define "marriage" in its existing law.

Wisconsin Republicans say they will introduce DOMA legislation this fall.

"We're moving on it as quickly as we can," said Sen. Scott Fitzgerald, (R-Juneau), last week.

Fitzgerald said the party also is weighing a possible amendment to the state constitution.

Doyle did not say whether he would veto a DOMA bill if it crossed his desk.

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This article originally appeared on 365gay.com. Republished with permission.