Thursday, February 23, 2012

MD: Senate Passes Marriage Equality Bill 25-22!

Woo hoo! The Maryland State Senate completed work on  HB 438, the Civil Marriage Protection Act, by passing the legislation on a 25-22 vote, sending the measure to Democratic Governor Martin O'Malley who has promised to sign it into law.

NGLTF's Executive Director Rea Carey made a statement:
“Maryland and marriage equality will certainly make a lovely couple. Maryland is the Free State, after all. To be able to share and celebrate one's love and commitment both publicly and legally is a lifelong dream for thousands of same-sex couples and their families. It’s thrilling that Maryland is poised to make this a reality by becoming the latest state to treat its families fairly. This has been a long journey of changing hearts and minds, of breaking down walls, of shining a spotlight on our common humanity. Congratulations to Equality Maryland, Marylanders for Marriage Equality and all those who have been part of the journey leading to this victory.”
By this action Maryland will likely become the 8th state to legalize marriage equality. However, as I noted earlier in a blog post, it is not clear if the law will actually go into effect January 1, 2013 due to the referendum process in Maryland.

Heterosexual supremacists have until May 31st to gather 55,736 signatures to put the measure up for a vote on the November 6, 2012 ballot. Whether same-sex couples will be able to get married will depend on the outcome of the vote.

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