Main | Thursday, January 26, 2012

Washington Marriage Bill Advances

The GOP tried to sink it with poison amendments.
A Senate committee on Thursday approved a bill to legalize same-sex marriage in Washington state, moving the measure one step closer to passage. The Government Operations, Tribal Relations & Elections Committee approved the measure with a 4-3 voice vote split on party lines. The bill is expected to head to a floor vote next, though a date has not yet been determined. Several Republican amendments were rejected, including one that would have required that the measure be sent to the November ballot.
But looming over the above good news is this:
If a marriage bill is passed during this legislative session, gay and lesbian couples will be able to get married starting in June unless opponents file a referendum to challenge it. Opponents have already said they will. A referendum can't be filed until after the bill is passed by the Legislature and signed into law by Gregoire. Opponents then must turn in 120,577 signatures by July 6.
The best plan might be to delay the bill's approval until the last possible minute.

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