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Inside the Gay Marriage Fight

I've got an inside peek at the same-sex marriage fight roiling the State House in today's Phoenix. And there was plenty that landed on the cutting-room floor. One thing to keep an eye on in the General Assembly: the amendment process.

Same-sex marriage opponents, in both houses, are likely to propose an amendment that would send the question to the voters. The measure, in the long run, doesn't have a prayer - same-sex marriage proponents, Governor Chafee among them, will never agree to a referendum on the question. Voters in all 30 states that have considered gay nuptials have rejected them, after all.

But if the amendment gets enough support from legislators looking for a way to appease anti-gay marriage constituents, it could serve as a sort of poison pill for the larger bill - saddling it with a provision that will lead to its defeat.

For Speaker of the House Gordon Fox and other supporters of same-sex marriage, counting votes on the amendments is as important as counting votes on the main bill.

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