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Gov. Gregoire Signs Washington Marriage Equality Bill

Gov. Gregoire Signs Washington Marriage Equality Bill

 

Washington governor Chris Gregoire signed on Monday a bill that could make Washington the next state to legalize marriage equality.

Via the AP:

Gregoire signed the bill in the state reception room in the Capitol, surrounded by gay rights supporters. “I’m proud our same-sex couples will no longer be treated as separate but equal,” Gregoire said.

It’s a historic moment, but same-sex couples can’t walk down the aisle just yet.

The law takes effect June 7, but opponents are already mounting challenges on multiple fronts.

Opponents planned to file a challenge Monday that could put the law on hold pending the outcome of a November vote. Separately, an initiative was filed at the beginning of the session that opponents of gay marriage say could lead to the new law being overturned.

The state reception room at the Capitol was packed with gay rights supporters and at least 40 lawmakers from the House and Senate.

In what has been rapid progress for the bill since Gov. Gregoire’s announcement that she supported same-sex marriage in January, the Washington state Senate passed the bill 28-21 with four Republicans crossing party lines to vote with the Democratic majority, while the state House of Representatives by a 55-43 vote last Wednesday.

If unimpeded the law will take effect in June with Washington becoming the seventh state to legalize same-sex marriage (discounting Maine and California), following in the footsteps of Massachusetts, Connecticut, Vermont, New Hampshire, Iowa, and New York.

As mentioned above, plans are already afoot to curtail Washington’s progress though, with foes of gay marriage planning to put marriage equality to a public vote. Opponents will require 120, 577 signatures by July 6 in order to qualify for the November ballot, but could only file their ballot proposal after the legislation was signed. If a ballot measure is filed the law cannot come into effect until the public have voted. A constitutional amendment to outlaw marriage equality is also being considered.

Finally, to celebrate this momentus event, the Human Rights Campaign released the following video:

Related Reading:

Microsoft Supports Marriage Equality in Washington

WA Lawyer Moves to Repeal Gay Marriage (Before It’s Even Been Legalized)

GOP Senator Supports Washington Marriage Equality Bill

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Image Copyright Sam Mugraby (Photos8.com).

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31 comments

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5:23AM PDT on Sep 10, 2012

good news

6:33AM PDT on Mar 22, 2012

I agree--kudoes to Governor Gregoire, and a hearty congrats. to the great state of Washington!

1:50AM PST on Feb 15, 2012

Thank you.

9:23PM PST on Feb 14, 2012

Being against LGBT people is a great example of the kind of poor human judgment that's trying its mightiest to undo human civilization.

Instead of criticizing LGBT people and making their lives harder, we should grant them every advantage as citizens. WHY? Because they are almost always intelligent, quality people who contribute positively to their communities. Because they do very, very little crime &/or violence against their fellow humans. You never see a gay person knocking over a liquor store! Because they are witty, well-read and educated. Because they are artistic and love order, beauty and design. You rarely see a gay person with an ugly, messy abode! And because they so fervently love their children and relatives. They have GOOD FAMILY VALUES. At least the ones I know are all this way.. And I know quite a few.

People who don't know how to embrace change always cling blindly, and furiously, to philosophical bumper stickers hoping that will protect them from the unknown.

Lastly, THAT'S MY GOVERNOR! Way to go, Gregoire!

9:16PM PST on Feb 14, 2012

Yippeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee

7:05PM PST on Feb 14, 2012

It is refreshing to read good news from my former home state that honors and respects fellow human beings. BRAVO Governor Gregoire!!!

2:23PM PST on Feb 14, 2012

Rob if the voting is by the people, black people and women would still be chattel. Minorities have always been protected by law not the will of the people.

If you want a historic example of the will of the people and how wrong it was, watch the PBS show, "Slavery by Another Name." That was the "will of the people" white people.

The protection of an oppressed minority is a matter of laws. Otherwise, they wouldn't be oppressed would they?

1:33PM PST on Feb 14, 2012

Noted

12:19PM PST on Feb 14, 2012

As others have pointed out, the religious bigots are priming up to try to relegate their fellow human beings back to second class citizens. Rights should never be decided by the will of the majority. Never! We have the Constitution to protect the rights of the minority from the will of the majority. The CA Supreme Court was absolutely right in judging Prop 8 as unconstitutional. Each and every state needs a Supreme Court ruling to enforce the rights of gay people to marry as they wish.
Just as when there were laws that stopped whites from marrying anyone of color the world didn't end when they were abolished. Marraige wasn't destroyed.
We run around screaming America is so great and as we have freedom and rights. But what about the rights of others to enjoy the rights you have? We are hardly a free and just society when various segments of our population are denied the rights enjoyed by other segments.
And religion will still have to the right to not recognize the civil rights of equality.

And someday I hope we repeal the 'super' rights of the wealthy to fleece the other 99% of the world.

11:15AM PST on Feb 14, 2012

Rob D.

I do believe you don't get it. California's disgraceful prop 8 has twice been declared unConsitutional. Voters do no approve or disapprove civil rights. And like it or not, marriage between people of the same sex is a civil right.
And if you disagree with that, please tell me how the private lives of others and their desire to be happy with the person they love, how does that affect your life? Why do you consider it any of your business?

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