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Churches Oppose Gay Marriage Amendment
Updated January 27, 2014 6:43 AM
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(INDIANAPOLIS) - Attempts to make changes to the marriage amendment are anticipated on the floor of the Indiana House of Representatives on Monday.

In the meantime, supporters of gay marriage plan a series of activities over the weekend, and the author of the marriage amendment has a new opponent for the November election.

First, dozens of clergymen gathered at Christ Church Cathedral on the Circle. They announced plans to pray and preach in the effort to drum up opposition to the marriage amendment.

"We hope and we pray that representatives on Monday will take a higher road," said Rev. Melody Merida of Life Journey Church.

Democrats in the Indiana House also hope to stop the marriage amendment even while they prepare to use it as an issue in the November Elections.

The Republican author of measure, Rep. Eric Turner (R-Cicero,) picked up a new Democratic opponent. Former Statehouse reporter Bob Ashley filed to run against Turner, citing the marriage amendment as motivation.

"He's appealing to a minority of the voters," said Ashley. "I don't think it has a chance although I think it's just going to cause trouble."

"When you sort of step in front of the winds of change," said Minority Leader Scott Pelath, "sometimes voters take a second look at you."

In the meantime, leaders in the state Senate are already preparing for the marriage amendment to pass the House.

"It's an important issue," said Senate GOP Leader David Long, "and it's one that's drawn an amazing amount of attention both media and statewide with Hoosiers everywhere so it deserves a full debate."

The second sentence of the marriage amendment, the one that outlaws civil unions, will be the focus of efforts to amend it Monday.

Minority Leader Pelath says, however, that Democrats may decide to leave it as is, making it a more powerful political tool to use against Republicans who vote for it.

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