California Secretary of State Debra Bowen on Monday certified for the state ballot a measure that would define marriage as “between a man and a woman.”
The certification comes less than a month after the state Supreme Court overturned a ban on homosexual marriage. According to the Sacramento Bee, counties in California are scheduled to begin issuing marriage licenses for same-sex couples on June 17.
A coalition of churches and conservative groups, together with attorneys general from 10 other states, is seeking a legal decision that would delay same-sex marriages in the state until after the November election.
The combined spending by both those who support and those who oppose the measure is expected to reach $30 million.
Reaction to the certification of the measure from pro-family groups has been celebratory but also sobered by the fact that the courts had struck down Proposition 22, which became part of California’s legal code in 2000.
"The future of marriage in California should be determined among the 36 million residents of the State of California -- not by the personal, closed-door deliberation of seven judges," said Rev. Sam Rodriguez, Jr., an Advisory Board Member of the Alliance for Marriage Foundation.
Looking forward to the November ballot, Rodriguez pointed to the Latino community as “the key to protecting marriage in California - and preventing the attack on marriage here from having national fallout."
"For several decades, America has been wandering in a wilderness of social problems caused by family disintegration," added Rodriguez. "Tragically, as bad as our current situation may be, it could soon become dramatically worse. This is because California courts and the legislature are poised to erase the legal road map for marriage and the family from state law."