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Sponsor of anti-gay Amendment 1 in North Carolina abandons it, will vote against it

Marriage equality

By Scottie ThomastonGoal Thermometer

State Representative Jim Crawford is a conservative Democrat in North Carolina who was one of the supporters and sponsors of Amendment 1, working to get it onto the ballot for this year’s primary election on May 8. He was one of only ten House Democrats who supported putting the measure on the ballot. Now that support for the amendment is fading and people are coming to understand how broad and dangerous it would be to families and children, gay and straight alike, Crawford is withdrawing his support and pledging to vote no:

In the video, a lesbian woman takes Crawford to task over his support for the amendment.

“(T)hat hateful piece of discriminatory legislation that would be put in our constitution of this state was introduced by Jim Crawford and I’ll never forgive you for that, because you slapped me and every gay person in this state when you did that,” she said.

Crawford responded by acknowledging he had submitted amendment drafts but he did not favor the version that’s on the ballot.

“I will definitely vote against it because I think it goes to far,” Crawford said.

She says:

“I want to put a face on this amendment,” and she says, “I am what I am, and I’m a damn good citizen of this county.”

Pam Spaulding, who lives in North Carolina, comments:

It clearly didn’t “go too far” before that forum. What it goes to show is that even the people who wanted this on the ballot now, seeing the tide turning with conservatives and people of faith rallying against Amendment One, are running away from their decision to put civil rights of a minority on the ballot. And they are running for cover and in Crawford’s case, so desperate they are lying about their original commitment.

It does seem like supporters are jumping ship these days. The coalition against Amendment 1 is growing by the day. Prominent statewide Republicans, libertarians and religious folks are united in opposition alongside the NAACP, civil rights and civil liberties groups, and some business groups. The Governor and Attorney General of North Carolina have come out in opposition, as well as former Democratic and Republican mayors of cities in the state. It’s increasingly awkward for supporters to stand in defense of an amendment that reaches so far it would eliminate insurance for children with unmarried parents and bar victims of domestic violence from seeking legal recourse, to say the least.

And the pro-Amendment web and TV campaign ads aren’t helping matters. They’re filled with distortions and confusing rhetoric about religious freedoms and the Bible. None so far have addressed the issue of removal of civil unions and domestic partnerships, the effects on children’s health insurance, the effects on domestic violence law, the war on women, or any other claims brought on by the broad and poorly-written language of the amendment – the statement that the “only domestic legal union” would be marriage between a man and a woman, something unheard of and undefined in North Carolina law. The ads don’t answer charges and they are not going to persuade independent and undecided voters to come out in support of the amendment with all these questions remaining, simply based on an appeal to religion. As more supporters abandon the amendment we’ll see how the pro-Amendment 1 campaign responds. It’s sure to be interesting.

What you can do to help on Amendment One:Goal Thermometer

1. Contribute to the campaign on ActBlue so they have the resources they need to get our message out.

2. Sign up for a Courageous Conversation about Amendment One with someone you know in NC.

3. Follow the campaign on Facebook and Twitter.

4. Download social media tools and yard signs to show your opposition to Amendment 1.

5. Volunteer to Call for Equality – a GOTV phone banking effort against Amendment 1.

26 Comments

  • 1. Bob  |  April 26, 2012 at 12:01 pm

    "I am what I am, and I'm a dam good citizen" love it,,,,,, thanks to her for standing up and putting a face to the people the amendment discriminates against"

  • 2. Jeff  |  April 26, 2012 at 12:45 pm

    "goes too far"??? What is that supposed to mean? That it would have been okay with him if it just harmed gay people and not unmarried straight people? That it is okay to amend a constitution to deny us marriage equality?
    If the legislation "got changed" why the hell didn't he withdraw his name as a sponsor.
    What happened here is that he wanted to appease the bigoted portion of his constituency and he got caught. That's what went too far.

  • 3. truthspew  |  April 26, 2012 at 12:45 pm

    I find it interesting that many high profile people in North Carolina are coming out against the amendment very publicly. Good – I hope it is defeated. I want the bigots to suffer black eye after black eye until such time as they stop trying to deny us rights.

  • 4. Jamie  |  April 26, 2012 at 12:55 pm

    Unfortunately, this is typical. A legislator votes to put hatred up for a popular vote, then sheepishly changes his position. We shouldn't continue to let this happen and I hope that gays and lesbians remember what he did and work feverishly to insure he gets voted out of office. I honestly believe this is a premeditated position.

  • 5. exx-man  |  April 26, 2012 at 1:25 pm

    What I'm hearing from a good number of these people withdrawing their support is their disagreement with how far Amendment 1 goes. If this amendment does go down to defeat I would not be at all surprised to see a new amendment that is more narrowly focused on illegitimizing same sex marriage come up. If so, it will be interesting to see how that goes down.

  • 6. Michael Scott  |  April 26, 2012 at 1:30 pm

    I just called my folks in North Carolina to a) see if they were voting and how much they knew about this amendment and b) convince them to vote against it. They knew about it, but they didn't know about how many people are pulling support from it. My Mom said they had already made up their minds to vote against it but knowing how broad it is in scope really drove it home. I hope everyone calls someone they know in NC and encourages them to do vote against this odious piece of legislation. But, I can now be sure of two more votes against it. Thanks, Mom and Dad :)

  • 7. mark  |  April 26, 2012 at 1:55 pm

    He should go on TV and denounce it !

  • 8. Adam Bink  |  April 26, 2012 at 2:01 pm

    Great job!

  • 9. Jamie  |  April 26, 2012 at 2:27 pm

    He is responsible for his vote. He should film a commercial and help fund it. Unfortunately, he won't do either.

  • 10. Steve  |  April 26, 2012 at 2:44 pm

    Too late dumb@ss, the cats out of the bag.

  • 11. Reformed  |  April 26, 2012 at 2:55 pm

    Exactly, was just looking for the end of the comment thread to say the same thing. Much like the governor saying "in this competitive environment we can't afford this" as if it were some kind of a luxury that should put on hold for better times. I know that isn't what she meant, but why can't say, this is wrong, period. Now backtracking, I appreciate that people work political angles, I do, but what blows is that this is an issue that needs talking about in 2012, in the United States. Argh, this goes too far. Yes, how far should Jim? It is only intended to hurt domestic violence victims, but you have found that it goes too far in that it hurts gay families as well? Is that it?

  • 12. Jimcracky  |  April 26, 2012 at 5:35 pm

    While I certainly hope this does not pass, it is entirely possible that if it does, that might be the biggest black eye ever, in the long run. Sometimes you win the battle and it costs you the war. Again, don't want it to pass, but there might be a silver lining if it does.

  • 13. Reformed  |  April 26, 2012 at 6:29 pm

    Mr Crawford! What exactly was the legistlation that you put your name too? Are we too believe that the anti-gay part was added afterward? It now goes to far? You mean farther than just taking away this gay citizen's rights?

  • 14. Str8Grandmother  |  April 27, 2012 at 9:21 am

    Great Testimony from the Senior Lesbian.

  • 15. Leigh  |  April 27, 2012 at 4:09 pm

    For this reason God gave them up to dishonorable passions. For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature; and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another, men committing shameless acts with men and receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error. Romans 1:26-27. The Truth hurts I know…

  • 16. Kate  |  April 27, 2012 at 4:32 pm

    You're entitled to believe in all the superstitions and fairy tale books you like. Still doesn't make it reality, though.

  • 17. nightshayde  |  April 27, 2012 at 5:34 pm

    Your mythology should have exactly as much weight in law as does any other mythology (Greek, Roman, Norse, Celtic, etc…) — i.e. NONE.

    If you want to live your live according to your mythology, that is your prerogative. Others who don't share your mythology should be able to live according to their own beliefs.

  • 18. Ben in Oakland  |  April 28, 2012 at 1:01 pm

    For this reason….

    It amazes how much you good Christians can twist this passage into saying something it doesn't. It is hardly a condemnation of homosexuality. It's a condemnation of idolatry.

    The truth hurts, as you say.

  • 19. Bob  |  April 28, 2012 at 1:36 pm

    It say's God gave them up!!!!!!!!! being the all powerful being HE is,,, he did not have to give them up to explore these relations,,,,, if God wanted to change it he could,,,,, but he didn't ,,,,, let them be consume by passion for one another

  • 20. Links for Monday, April 3&hellip  |  April 30, 2012 at 11:00 am

    […] From Prop 8 Trial Tracker: Sponsor of NC's Anti-Gay Amendment 1 will vote against it. […]

  • 21. Warren  |  May 1, 2012 at 2:36 am

    Hi, I'm a North Carolinian visiting here (I was looking for confirmation that Crawford had actually dropped his support). This is going to be a really hard fight. If we win it, we'll be the only Southern state to defeat one of these. I'm willing to accept allies in the fight for the wrong reasons if it means we do that. I think the value of that victory, nationally, would be so great as to make further attempts at these hateful moves risky politics.

  • 22. Dan  |  May 1, 2012 at 9:50 pm

    "Despite increased efforts by homosexual activists to flood the airwaves with half-truths and embellished scare tactics about this straight-forward Marriage Protection Amendment, North Carolina voters continue to understand the importance of protecting marriage in the State Constitution,” said Bill Brooks, president of the North Carolina Family Policy Council. “North Carolina’s Marriage Amendment is similar to those passed in several other states, none of which have seen the apocalyptic predictions being made by homosexual activists in this campaign come true. The only thing the Marriage Protection Amendment will do is protect society’s foundational institution from attempted redefinition by legislators or judges.”

  • 23. KEVIN  |  May 2, 2012 at 11:44 am

    Are you sure about that???

  • 24. KEVIN  |  May 2, 2012 at 11:51 am

    Careful with your grammar there Slick. Remember, you are not just preaching to the choir….if I get your drift. You are trying to be the intelligent voice of bigotry supporting your cause…..!!!!!????? You also want to convince the liberal intelligentsia there is an error in their WAYS…..Right????????????????YOU AIN'T GETTING IT.

  • 25. Prop 8 Trial Tracker &raq&hellip  |  May 11, 2012 at 8:17 am

    […] 1 would probably be repealed in 20 years or so; one of the legislative sponsors of Amendment 1 changing his mind and announcing his plans to vote against Amendment 1 because it goes too far; the “protect the Caucasian race” comments by the wife of a […]

  • 26. Adam Bink: A Look At What&hellip  |  May 12, 2012 at 11:55 pm

    […] 1 would probably be repealed in 20 years or so; one of the legislative sponsors of Amendment 1 changing his mind and announcing his plans to vote against Amendment 1 because it goes too far; the “protect the Caucasian race” comments by the wife of a […]

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