Continuing a national trend, voters in Kansas overwhelmingly approved amending the state constitution in order to ban homosexual marriage.

The April 5 measure passed 70 percent to 29 percent. While the margin of victory was similar to those in Hawaii, Nevada, and Missouri, the Kansas amendment goes further than those efforts. It prevents Kansas from acknowledging Vermont-style civil unions for gay couples.

Terry Fox, pastor of Immanuel Baptist Church in Wichita, helped lead the drive. Fox said Christians throughout the state united to support the amendment. "I think one of the keys to our success was the coming together of [evangelicals]," Fox said. "Then we got the support of the Catholic Church, and overall we had 1,200 churches behind this."

Fox had lobbied the Kansas legislature last spring to put the amendment on the November ballot. In May it fell five votes short in the House.

In approving the measure, Kansas becomes the 18th state since 1998 to define marriage as solely between one man and one woman. At least five other states—Alabama, Massachusetts, Tennessee, South Dakota, and Wisconsin—are scheduled or likely to put similar measures on the ballot in 2006. In April, Oregon's high court invalidated 3,000 marriage licenses issued to homosexual couples.

Despite Kansas's lopsided vote to ban gay marriage, the leaders of two national organizations said federal courts will check such measures.

Matt Daniels, president of the Alliance for Marriage, which opposes homosexual marriage, said, "I absolutely guarantee you that the federal courts and the Supreme Court will strike down marriage laws." Daniels said that federal judges and supporters of same-sex marriage are trying "to subvert popular opinion through the courts."

Matt Foreman, executive director of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, agreed. Foreman predicted that the courts would strike down bans against gay marriage as they did bans of interracial marriage and divorce. "There's a context in which all these decisions are happening: It's the equal protection clause of the Constitution. … A majority should not decide human rights for a minority."

Conceding his cause lost seven votes in last November's election, Foreman said gay-marriage opponents are still 12 Senate votes short of the number needed to pass the Federal Marriage Amendment, which requires two-thirds support. Daniels, however, characterized opposition to the amendment in the upper chamber as "softening."

Related Elsewhere:

Our full coverage of the same-sex marriage debate is available online.

More CT articles on homosexuality include:

Cheated by the Affirming Church | Contrary to what some churches teach, it is homosexuality—and not its suppression—that enslaves people like me. (Feb. 17, 2005)
My Path to Lesbianism | It was hatred of women that drove me there, and Christ in community that led me out. (Feb. 17, 2005)
Thirteen Bad Arguments for Same-Sex Marriage | Why the rhetoric doesn't stand up under scrutiny. (Aug. 26, 2004)
Why Gay Marriage Would Be Harmful | Institutionalizing homosexual marriage would be bad for marriage, bad for children, and bad for society. (Feb. 19, 2004)
'Get Mine, Get Yours' | Sexual swagger and slang do not mask a generation's loneliness. (May 07, 2003)
Stretch Pants, Beer, and Other Controversies | A New Testament professor discerns the relative from the timeless in biblical texts on slaves, women, and homosexuals. (July 08, 2002)
No Easy Victory | A plea from a Christian husband and father who, day by day, resists his homosexual desires. (March 08, 2002)
Ex-Gay Sheds the Mocking Quote Marks | The retiring head of Exodus says gay transformation ministries are more respected and effective than ever. (January 7, 2002)
Walking in the Truth | Winning arguments at church conventions is not enough without compassion for homosexuals. (Sept. 4, 2000)
Building a Bridge | A gay journalist and evangelical pastor correct their mutual misperceptions. (July 13, 2000)
The Jerry We Never Knew | He hangs out with liberal pundits and gay activists. Is this the same Jerry Falwell who founded the Moral Majority? (May 2, 2000)
Sex and Saints | A new vocabulary for an oversexualized culture. (Apr. 3, 2000)
Building outreach and friendship with the homosexual community | What Jerry Falwell really said at the Anti-Violence Forum. (Nov. 5, 1999)
Just Saying 'No' Is Not Enough | How should Christians address homosexuality? (Oct. 4, 1999)

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