Many pro-family organizations are giving out their voice in support of President Bush’s action in passing a new amendment to ban homosexual marriage but not so in favor of his stance on formation of civil unions where the states are left to decide separately.
The founder of the American Family Association -- a group that has gathered more than a million signatures on an online petition in support of a Federal Marriage Amendment – encouraged Christians to support the president with the difficult decision that he made for America saying it was the right thing to do.
"Now is time for the American public to get behind the president and throw their full support to him for taking this stand," Dr. Don Wildmon, the founder, said, "This will be the issue in the upcoming elections, and it's time for people who believe in traditional marriage being between one man and one woman to weigh in on this issue. The future of civilization is depending upon this particular issue."
Bob Knight of the Culture and Family Institute was also glad to see the president taking the action to defend traditional marriage although it could anticipate tremendous impact. "This is a major step by the president, to embrace a constitutional amendment," he says. "He had hinted about doing it; now he's come out and said it. So it's a very welcome statement."
However he was a bit concerned as the president let the states to decide on whether or not to allow gay couples to form civil unions saying that “that might lead people to believe that he’s okay to create civil unions, which is gay ‘marriage’ by another name.”
Concerned Women for America also raised the issue on the president’s stance on civil unions saying that they are completely against it.
Jan LaRue, chief counsel of CWA said, "What makes anybody think that activist courts or renegade mayors [a reference to San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom] will respect a state's choice to not provide marriage benefits to civil unions? Any state law, including a state constitutional amendment, can be trumped by a federal equal protection ruling by an activist judge."
Tony Nassif of the Cedars Cultural and Educational Foundation also took the same stance as CWA and CFI. "It make look good on the surface to come out with a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage while leaving the door open for civil unions," Nassiv said, "The problem is it marginalizes the religious aspect while at the same time giving the same rights and benefits of gay marriage to what they call 'civil unions.'"
Paul Weyrich of the Free Congress Foundation thinks it would be easier for the president to pass the amendment with the supporters of traditional marriage but he doesn't think it will solve disputes among conservatives who claims to allow the gay couples to form civil unions and those who don't. He thinks moderates wouldn't support an amendment that doesn't recognize cilvil unions.
"He didn't support outlawing civil unions -- and the argument on the part of some of the groups is that you have to have legislation that outlaws civil unions," Weyrich commented.
He continued, "It's going to be very difficult to get two-thirds votes on the Hill, particularly considering the position of major Democratic figures who have already come out against it."