marriage between a man and a woman is the only legal union that shall be valid
or recognized in this state.”
What is the ProtectMarriage.com
ProtectMarriage.com is a broad-based coalition of national, state, and local
pro-family organizations, churches and individuals united to amend the California
Constitution to protect the institution of marriage as a legal union between
a man and a woman. To date, the coalition represents over 1 million people
in California .
Click here for a list of coalition members.
Why is a coalition
Working together as a coalition solidifies widespread support across
and the nation. The combined resources - both in funding and volunteer - can
accomplish the huge task of passing a statewide constitutional amendment protecting
marriage. Working together as a coalition also ensures that the traditional
meaning of marriage is promoted in a manner consistent with the broad range
of cultural, religious and political beliefs of Californians who all support
traditional marriage in different ways and for different reasons.
Why is a constitutional
amendment necessary? Didn’t Californians already vote on something like this?
In the March 2000 election, the voters overwhelmingly passed Proposition 22
by over 61% of the vote. Prop. 22 added a regular statute to the California
Family Code to keep marriage between a man and a woman and prevent the state
Legislature from redefining marriage without a vote of the people. Since then
however, politicians and judges have chipped away at Prop 22 and ignored the
will of the voters. For
Last year San Francisco
Mayor Gavin Newsom thumbed his nose at California
voters by issuing marriage licenses to
thousands of homosexual couples in open defiance of Proposition 22.
Ultimately, the courts declared those so-called “marriages” to be invalid,
but left the door open to a future constitutional challenge against traditional
Additionally, the courts
have undermined Proposition 22 and marriage by upholding an act of the Legislature
that gave homosexual “domestic partners” the full legal status of married
spouses. Most recently, a San
Francisco judge ruled that
Proposition 22, a regular statute, violates the California
Constitution and ordered the licensing
of same-sex “marriages.” That decision is currently being appealed in the
The Legislature is now
considering legislation to allow licensing of homosexual "marriage."
amendment to the California Constitution, which requires a vote of the people,
is the only way to stop the politicians, and especially the courts, from re-defining
marriage against the will of the majority of Californians.
What would the Protect
Marriage constitutional amendment do?
If passed, the Protect Marriage Amendment would add the following to
the state constitution:
marriage between a man and a woman is the only legal union
that shall be valid or recognized in this state.”
other states have voted to amend their constitutions in a similar way.
How is the ProtectMarriage
Amendment different from Prop 22? Can the California
courts still overrule a constitutional
Proposition 22 added a regular statute to the California Family Code.
Regular statutes are a “lower” law than the state constitution. By adding
the ProtectMarriage Amendment to the state constitution, which is the
highest source of law in the state, the California
courts would be required to uphold marriage
because there is no other source of “higher” state law than the California
Would the ProtectMarriage
Amendment allow “homosexual marriage by a different name”?
No. By recognizing marriage between a man and a woman as the only legal
union in California ,
this amendment would prevent any law from recognizing, or giving rights on
the basis of, other personal relationships that attempt to imitate marriage,
such as homosexual “domestic partnerships” or “civil unions.”
Would the ProtectMarriage
Amendment allow the Legislature to give, or require private employers to give,
the legal rights and benefits of married spouses to other relationships, such
as “domestic partnerships”?
No. Since marriage would be the only legal union that may be recognized
under the ProtectMarriage Amendment, no other adult relationships
that attempt to imitate marriage could be legally recognized. Since
no other type of intimate union would be legally recognized, it logically
follows that there would also be no basis upon which to confer rights, benefits,
or obligations on such un-recognized relationships.
Would the ProtectMarriage
Amendment interfere with private domestic agreements between unmarried
will still continue to recognize the ability of all individual couples to
enter into private, enforceable agreements for mutual support and joint ownership
of property (sometimes called Marvin agreements). Such agreements
only involve rights and obligations as between two individuals; they do not
implicate government recognition of those relationships or rights and benefits
conferred by law.
Would the ProtectMarriage
Amendment preserve the rights, benefits, and legal status of marriage
for only a man and a woman?
Yes! Since traditional marriage
would be the only legally recognized union in California
, no other type of relationship could be
given the legal status of married spouses.
What is the process
for passing a Constitutional Amendment?
1: The official proponents of the ProtectMarriage Amendment provide
an official petition proposing the amendment to the voters. The campaign
must then obtain over 600,000 valid signatures of registered California
voters within just 150 days after the
Attorney General issues the Official Title and Summary of the measure. That’s
6,700 signatures per day!
2: When all the signatures have been gathered, the official proponents submit
the signatures gathered in each county to the local elections official to
verify the number of valid signatures.
3: Local elections officials report the total number of verified signatures
to the Secretary of State. If there are enough valid signatures, the Secretary
of State puts the amendment on the next statewide election ballot for a vote.
4: If the amendment receives more than 50% of the vote, it becomes part
of the state constitution immediately.
How much will all this
cost? How will money be raised?
ensure that at least 600,000 signatures are valid, the campaign must gather
at least 1 million raw (unverified) signatures. This is an enormous
task. The cost of gathering sufficient signatures is estimated to be
roughly $1.6 million.
the amendment is placed on the ballot, the campaign to urge voters to vote
“yes” will likely exceed $10 million.
large and small alike, will bring us closer to meeting this campaign budget.
Gifts are gladly accepted from organizations, churches, families, businesses,
and individuals who support protecting marriage. There is no limit on
the amount of individual contributions to ProtectMarriage.com, a registered
ballot-measure committee. Contributions can be made online via credit
card at www.protectmarriage.com.
Contributions are not tax deductible.
How can I help?
Sign your petition today!
Official petitions are available to download and print online, or contact
the campaign office by phone or email to request a petition by mail.
After you sign the petition,
help collect more signatures from friends and colleagues who also support
marriage. To circulate the petition, you must be registered to vote
or eligible to register to vote. Only registered voters, however, may
sign the petition. Go to the “How Can I Help” button at the top of this page
and sign up as a volunteer circulator!
Donate! This effort will take
financial participation from everyone who cares about protecting marriage.
Please consider making a contribution. You can donate online!
Endorse the ProtectMarriage
Amendment! Fill out the form on this website and become part of the