GOP Votes Down Civil Unions In Platform

    A social conservative hard line in Tampa.

    TAMPA, Florida — The GOP platform committee overwhelmingly voted down an effort to include recognitions of civil unions in the party's manifesto.

    The measure, offered by Rhode Island delegate Barbara Fenton and seconded by Connecticut's Themis Klarides, was rejected by the full committee in a voice vote, as a large number of members stoof up to oppose the potential plank.

    Fenton argued that the country was founded on the the principle of the separation of church and state, and thus government should allow for civil unions as different faiths use their own definitions of marriage for their purposes.

    "This would move us away from the benefits that marriage extends to a society," objected Tony Perkins, the president of the Family Research Council and a Louisiana delegate.

    A handful of other members rose up to oppose the measure, which failed as opponents raised their voices to loudly say "no." About a dozen members of the more than 100 delegates in the room voted in favor.