Backers say Referendum I will accomplish same goals for gay partners;
domestic partnership opponents fail to gather enough signatures for vote
DENVER One of two proposals that would allow same-sex couples to register as domestic partners was withdrawn from the November ballot Tuesday because backers said the other proposal would accomplish the same goal.
Coloradans for Fairness pulled Amendment 45, which would have changed the state Constitution to give registered domestic partners some of the same rights as married couples.
Still on the ballot is Referendum I, which would put domestic partnerships into state law, rather than into the constitution.
The referendum was placed on the ballot by the Legislature.
Coloradans for Fairness gathered signatures to place their proposal on the ballot partly to counter another measure that would have barred any government in Colorado from recognizing any relationship similar to marriage.
Backers of the anti-domestic partnership proposal failed to gather enough signatures to win a spot on the ballot.
“The simple question before voters this fall is whether we will provide basic legal rights for such things as hospital visitation, end-of-life decisions, inheritance of property,” said Sean Duffy, executive director of Coloradans for Fairness, which gathered more than 140,000 signatures for its proposal. “That’s the choice Referendum I gives us.”
He said Coloradans for Fairness offered its proposal to show that Referendum I would not allow gay marriage but provide committed gay couples with legal rights they lack now.
The move leaves seven initiatives and seven referenda on the November ballot, including two dealing with same-sex relationships: Referendum I and Amendment 43, which would amend the constitution to define marriage as a union between one man and one woman.
AIDS activist guilty in death of cabdriver
CHICAGO An AIDS activist and former Chicago city health department employee was convicted Monday in the death of a cabdriver who was run over by his own taxi.
A jury found Michael Jackson, 38, guilty of second-degree murder but acquitted him of first-degree murder and aggravated criminal hijacking.
Jackson was accused of running over Haroon Paryani, 62, last year during a dispute over an $8 fare. Witnesses said Jackson drove the cab over Paryani three times.
Jackson was a specialist with the city Department of Public Health’s division on sexually transmitted diseases. He was also founder and former president of the Hearts Foundation, which raises money to help AIDS victims.
This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition, August 25, 2006.