First Lawsuit Filed to Overturn Voter-Approved Marriage Amendments

By Melanie Arter | July 7, 2008 | 8:22 PM EDT

( - The first of what is expected to be a wave of litigation challenging defense of marriage initiatives approved by voters Tuesday was filed in U.S. District Court in Oklahoma on Thursday.

The suit asks the court to strike down Oklahoma's Defense of Marriage Act as unconstitutional, but pro-family groups say it's "just the beginning."

"We fully expect a tsunami of litigation designed to strike down marriage in different states across the country - including every state where voters approved state DOMA initiatives on Tuesday night," said Matt Daniels, president of the Alliance for Marriage.

State constitutional amendments banning same-sex "marriage" were approved Tuesday in all 11 states where they appeared on the ballot. Those states include Kentucky, Georgia, Mississippi, Arkansas, Michigan, Mississippi, Montana, North Dakota, Oklahoma and Utah, and Oregon.

In eight of those 11 states, the ballot measures also banned civil unions and/or domestic partnerships.

"The marriage amendment drafted by AFM was introduced with bi-partisan support in the Congress over three years ago," said Daniels. "Our efforts to let the people decide the future of marriage in America preceded this election - and will continue so long as activists strive to overcome public opinion by striking down our marriage laws in court.

"The constitutional problem created by almost a decade of activist lawsuits to destroy our marriage laws demands a constitutional fix," said Daniels.

"Ultimately, only our Federal Marriage Amendment will protect marriage - while leaving all issues of benefits to the democratic process in the states," he said. "AFM believes this centrist approach embodied in our amendment offers hope of a democratic solution to the debate that will be forced on America as a result of activist judges."

See Earlier Story:
Same-Sex Marriage Bans Win Big Across Nation (Nov. 3, 2004)

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