As the campaign progresses, the hotly-disputed language of the proposed federal amendment on gay marriage is bound to become an issue that each candidate will have to deal with.

Here it is. (Thanks to a reader for the suggestion.) We report, you decide:

Marriage in the United States shall consist only of the union of a man and a woman. Neither this Constitution or the constitution of any State, nor state or federal law, shall be construed to require that marital status or the legal incidents thereof be conferred upon unmarried couples or groups.

—Z.R.

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Zachary Roth is a contributing editor to The Washington Monthly. He also has written for The Los Angeles Times, The New Republic, Slate, Salon, The Daily Beast, and Talking Points Memo, among other outlets.