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  Edwards, Kerry feel heat over gay marriage stand
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ContributorEddie 
Last EditedEddie  Feb 28, 2004 07:14pm
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CategoryNews
MediaNewspaper - Miami Herald
News DateSaturday, February 28, 2004 06:00:00 AM UTC0:0
DescriptionSen. John Edwards continued to tiptoe around the subject of gay marriage on Thursday, even during a visit to the city at the heart of the issue, which is becoming an election-year hot button.

Speaking to reporters after a morning rally by the bay, Edwards called President Bush's proposed constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage "both wrong and unnecessary."

But he twice ignored a TV reporter's question asking how he defined marriage. In a booming voice, veteran KRON reporter Vic Lee added each time, "It's a big issue for us in San Francisco."

At that point an aide ended the six-minute news conference.

The gay marriage issue is complicated for Kerry because his home state, Massachusetts, is in the middle of the fray. The state Legislature is attempting to devise a state constitutional amendment to settle the legal question.

Kerry said he would support an amendment to the Massachusetts Constitution that would provide for partnerships or civil unions.

Edwards says he opposes gay marriage "because of my own personal views." He doesn't elaborate.

Asked at a news conference Wednesday why civil unions and gay rights should be state issues when civil rights are a federal issue, he said, "Because I believe it's something that should be left up to the states."

Pressed about his view of marriage and how he reached his views on gay marriage, he grew snappish.

"I'm finished with that question," he said, turning away.
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