Arizona

STATUS:

Anti-marriage constitutional amendment; a federal judge has ruled in the case of one same-sex couple that the state's refusal to respect a marriage performed legally in another state unconstitutional

WHAT'S HAPPENING: 

On September 12, U.S. District Court Judge John Sedwick granted a Temporary Restraining Order in the case of Fred McQuire and George Martinez, who passed away earlier this summer. The ruling ensures that Fred will be listed on George's death certificate and be granted the survivor benefits that all other married couples receive. A broader ruling is still pending in this case on whether same-sex couples throughout Arizona have the freedom to marry. Follow the Marriage Litigation in Arizona.

Marriage supporters from across the state have joined together to form Why Marriage Matters Arizona, a public education campaign designed to begin the conversation about the freedom to marry for all loving, committed couples in the state. Take the pledge with Why Marriage Matters Arizona HERE.

As these cases makes their way up through the courts, Arizonans across the state will continue to do the work of having conversations about why marriage matters and creating a climate for victory.

HISTORY:

In November 2006, a proposed anti-marriage constitutional amendment was rejected at the ballot in Arizona. With this, Arizona became the first state to reject an anti-marriage constitutional amendment, by a margin of 52 percent to 48 percent.

In November 2008, however, anti-gay forces in Arizona pushed through an anti-marriage constitutional amendment that excluded same-sex couples from marriage.

Several jurisdictions, including Bisbee and Tucson, have passed protections for domestic partners.

POLLING DATA: 

In Arizona, a majority of voters support the freedom to marry for same-sex couples, with 55% saying they support marriage, and just 35% saying they oppose marriage (Behavior Research Center, September 2013). A separate poll found that 79% of Hispanic respondents approve of marriage for all couples. (Public Policy Polling, May 2012)

GROUPS ACTIVELY WORKING ON MARRIAGE:

  • Why Marriage Matters Arizona is the grassroots public education campaign to build support for the freedom to marry in Arizona. 
  • The ACLU of Arizona is a non-partisan, non-profit organization dedicated to protecting the liberties guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution, the state Constitution, and state and federal laws.
  • Equality Arizona is the state's largest LGBT civil rights organization working to secure, protect and defend the rights and welfare of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people in Arizona.
  • Stonewall Democrats of Arizona is a statewide organization in Arizona dedicated to securing and protecting the rights of LGBT people in Arizona.  
  • Freedom to Marry is the campaign to win marriage for same-sex couples nationwide.
  • The Human Rights Campaign works to achieve equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Americans.

NUMBER OF SAME-SEX COUPLES:

According to The Williams Institute's analysis of the 2010 U.S. Census, 15,817 same-sex couples are living in Arizona, representing 6.6 same-sex couples per 1,000 households. 

Blog Posts Related to Arizona

VIDEO: Federal judge rules that Arizona must respect marriage of same-sex couple

Today, September 12, following the tragic death of George Martinez, a plaintiff in Lambda Legal's Majors v. Horne, challenging a law in Arizona that denies the freedom to marry to same-sex couples, U.S. District Court judge John Sedwick granted a Temporary Restraining Order.

U.S. Conference of Mayors passes resolution calling for end to marriage discrimination

Yesterday, June 23, at its annual conference in Dallas, the U.S. Conference of Mayors overwhelmingly passed a resolution calling on federal courts, including the Supreme Court, to expeditiously bring an end to marriage discrimination against gay couples nationwide.

Mothers across the country share stories of why marriage matters for all families

This Mother’s Day, moms are speaking out for the freedom to marry. From moms of gay and lesbian children to lesbian moms raising kids, their stories send one clear message: It's time for marriage nationwide. Read 16 of their moving stories.

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Resources Related to Arizona

Southern Poverty Law Center: 18 Anti-Gay Groups and Their Propaganda

The Southern Poverty Law Center provides a detailed listing of anti-gay groups know for their dangerous propaganda aimed at lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.

Results from Ballot Measures in AZ, AR, CA, CT and FL

Find results for states with anti-gay ballot measures in the 2008 election.

Arizona Census Snapshot

Demographic and economic information about same-sex couples and same-sex couples raising children in Arizona.

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