RHODE ISLAND: Marriage Equality Bill To Be Introduced In State House Today
Rhode Island state Rep. Arthur Handy will introduce a marriage equality bill today. Handy's bill already has 27 cosponsors.
Handy said the bill he will introduce is identical to one he introduced last year, declaring marriage to be a “legal institution recognized by the state in order to promote stable relationships and to protect individuals who are in those relationships.” It says: “Any person who otherwise meets the eligibility requirements [in law] may marry any other eligible person regardless of gender.” It also says: “No person shall marry” a long list of relatives, including a parent, grandparent, sibling or child of a sibling, and makes clear that no religious institution would be required to perform a civil marriage if it conflicted with its teachings. Within days, Rep. Jon Brien, D-Woonsocket, has promised to reintroduce legislation that would take the decision — which he termed highly personal — out of the hands of the state’s 113 legislators by requiring a public referendum.Here we go!