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Gay Marriage Amendment Debated at Law School (Video)

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Protesters and students meet House Majority Leader Paul Stam '75 at UNC School of Law prior to the debate.

North Carolina State Reps. Minority Whip Rick Glazier, D-Cumberland, and House Majority Leader Paul Stam ’75, R-Wake, debated the proposed North Carolina defense of marriage amendment at UNC School of Law on Wednesday, Sept. 21. Last week, the legislature agreed to place the proposed amendment on next May's ballots. The proposed amendment would make marriage between a man and woman the only domestic legal union recognized by the state. If approved by a majority of voters, it would also bar the state from recognizing civil unions and other same-sex partnerships.

Students protesting the amendment greeted the representatives outside the law school. Approximately 200 students, faculty, staff and community members gathered in a lecture-style classroom to witness the representatives discussing each side of the issue. A second classroom broadcasting a live video stream of the debate was filled with crowd overflow.

Michael Gerhardt, Samuel Ashe Distinguished Professor in Constitutional Law and director of the Center for Law and Government, moderated the 50-minute debate and read written questions submitted by the audience.

The representatives discussed several aspects of the amendment, including procedural concerns, textual issues, rationale and potential effects. The audience applauded several of Glazier’s remarks throughout the debate.

At a reception following the debate, audience members had a chance to meet with the representatives to share their views and ask questions.

The Constitution and Gay Marriage from UNC School of Law on Vimeo.

-September 22, 2011

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