Proponents Withdraw Domestic Partnership Initiative

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Proponents of a ballot initiative to allow gay couples to register as domestic partners and enjoy some of the same rights as married couples have withdrawn the measure.
Backers of what was to appear as Amendment 45 on the November ballot say there's no longer any need for it because proponents of a competing measure failed to gather enough signatures for their proposal. And the Legislature put on the ballot a similar proposal.
The move leaves seven referenda -- proposals put on the ballot by lawmakers -- and seven initiatives on the November ballot. Among them is Referendum I on domestic partnerships, and Amendment 43, which would amend the state Constitution to define marriage as a union between one man and one woman.
Backers of the other domestic partnership proposal had worked to put it on the ballot as a counter to another proposal that would have prohibited the state government and any local governments from recognizing any relationship similar to marriage.
Coloradans for Fairness Executive Director Sean Duffy says domestic partnerships are not the same thing as gay marriage. He says Referendum I would provide basic legal rights to thousands of committed gay couples who now lack them.