Amendment 2 supporters rally in Tampa listen04/17/08 Seán Kinane
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This afternoon a group supporting the amendment that would define marriage as the union between one man and one woman in Florida’s Constitution held a press conference to announce their new name, strategy and website. It was one of several similar coordinated events around the state to promote Amendment 2, which will be on this November’s ballot.
Terry Kemple, president and founder of the Community Issues Council, announced the new slogan and website for the campaign to enshrine a ban on gay marriage in the Florida constitution, called yes 2 marriage.org.
Sara Tillis is a member of Idlewild Baptist Church in south Hillsborough and has been married for 52 years. She said Amendment 2 “does not prohibit the government or private corporations from extending benefits to any persons,” but opponents of the amendment “are waging a campaign of fraud and deception trying to scare senior citizens.”
But Nadine Smith, Executive Director of Equality Florida, said Amendment 2 would cause real hardships for some Florida seniors.
The press conference was held at the Beulah Baptist Institutional Church in Tampa. Its pastor, W. James Favorite, spoke in favor of Amendment 2 and said his church is the oldest African-American Baptist church in Tampa, having been “organized in 1865 on the heels of the Emancipation Proclamation.”
Nancy Kline is from Largo and said she is “in full support of marriage only being recognized as between a man and a woman.”
Derek Newton is campaign manager for a group opposing the amendment, called Say No 2. Newton said he opposes the amendment because it will prohibit the recognition of any relationship that is not marriage.
Newton said the amendment would not affect the state’s existing marriage arrangement because of laws already in place in Florida.
Photo credit: Seán Kinane/WMNF