Marriage amendment gets new title

DFL Secretary of State Mark Ritchie has come up with a new ballot title for the Republican-backed constitutional amendment on same-sex marriage.

Ritchie announced today that the title will read “Limiting the Status of Marriage to Opposite Sex Couples.” He sent a letter to the state attorney general, who has approved the wording. GOP sponsors of the amendment, which passed in the 2011 session, wanted it titled, “Recognition of Marriage Solely Between One Man and One Woman.” But Ritchie said state law allows him to make changes.

“The statute says that we provide that title,” Ritchie said. “If the Legislature wants to change the statute, they have to get that changed in the normal method. So, passing the law and then getting the governor’s signature.”

Ritchie’s office said Gov. Mark Dayton invalidated the original legislative title when he vetoed the underlying bill. But that largely symbolic veto could not keep the constitutional amendment off the ballot.

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