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MA: Church drive nets 25K signatures for marriage amendment petition

The wingnuts have half of the signatures they need to put same-sex marriage on the ballot in Massachusetts, after a one-day push in the churches to sign people on. Look at the quote by former Boston Mayor Ray Flynn. I want to hurl. (

Petitions supporting the constitutional amendment were circulated Sunday at all Catholic Churches and at evangelical and other Protestant churches throughout the state.

The amendment has the backing of the state’s four Roman Catholic bishops and other conservative religious leaders.

On Monday, Vote On Marriage – the umbrella group behind the amendment – said that it had collected 25,000 signatures. It needs 65,825 signatures by Thanksgiving for the measure to be considered.

The names then would need to be verified by the Secretary of State. The proposed amendment would then go to the legislature where it requires the support of 50 members. The earliest it could go to voters would be in 2008.

Some people who signed by petitions on Sunday said they felt pressured. One woman who did not want to be identified said that others at her church who tried not to sign were harassed by church elders who were circulating the forms. “I didn’t want to be singled out,” she told “I just signed it and hoped that would be the end of it.”

Former Boston Mayor Raymond Flynn, one of the petition’s chief sponsors, said church officials have an obligation to “speak out on important issues in the civic arena.”

The marriage petition is not against gays but for children,” he said. “We believe that a loving family with a mother and a father is the best environment for children to be brought up in.”

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Pam Spaulding

Pam Spaulding