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Old 23rd Feb 2012, 07:28 PM   #1
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Default Maryland passes Same Sex Marriage Legislation and Gov plans to sign it!

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(CNN) -- The Maryland Senate voted Thursday evening to legalize same-sex marriage, the latest sign of growing national recognition of such unions among gay and lesbian couples.

Gov. Martin O'Malley has pledged to sign the bill into law, which was approved last week by the House of Delegates.

"All children deserve the opportunity to live in a loving, caring, committed, and stable home, protected equally under the law," O'Malley said in a statement after the vote.
The Maryland vote comes less than two weeks after Washington legislators voted to legalize same-sex marriage. That measure will take effect in the summer if it survives a likely court challenge.

Six states and the District of Columbia already issue same-sex marriage licenses -- Connecticut, Iowa, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York and Vermont. Five states -- Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, New Jersey and Rhode Island -- allow civil unions that provide rights similar to marriage.

New Jersey lawmakers approved same-sex marriage this month, but Gov. Chris Christie vetoed the legislation. He has said voters should decide the issue in a statewide referendum.

Voters in Minnesota and North Carolina, meanwhile, will consider proposals in November to ban gay marriage in those states. New Hampshire lawmakers may also consider a repeal of its same-sex marriage law, according to the National Organization for Marriage, which opposes same-sex marriage. Lawsuits seeking to expand civil unions or turn back laws banning same-sex marriages are working through the courts in at least 12 states, including Hawaii, Minnesota and California, the organization said.

The flurry of activity is a stark change from two decades ago, when the issue of same-sex marriage first gained national attention. Just a decade ago, no states allowed such unions.

In 1996, when Congress defined marriage solely as a union between a man and a woman, 68% of Americans opposed same-sex marriage, with just 27% in favor, according to polling by Gallup. By May 2011, the lines had crossed, with 53% of Americans in favor and 45% opposed, according to the organization.

In November, the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press reported a more divided public -- 46% in favor of same-sex marriages and 44% opposed. But Pew also said the uptick in support seems to be gaining steam, having jumped 9 percentage points in two years.

The shifting attitudes have emboldened proponents of same-sex marriage.
"There's no question that with so many Americans having changed their minds and opened their hearts as they've heard the stories of real couples and thought about why marriage matters, we now have tremendous momentum towards ending marriage discrimination," said Evan Wolfson, president of Freedom to Marry, which favors recognizing a right to marriage for gay couples.

"We could see a nationwide victory as soon as one to two years. It could also take as much as 10 years."
Opponents disagree.

Citing the 31 states in which voters have approved measures defining marriage as a union between a man and a woman, National Organization for Marriage President Brian Brown said he doesn't believe polls saying that a majority of Americans now support same-sex marriage.

"The reality is that in these 31 states, everywhere we've had a vote, is that voters have said they believe marriage is an institution between a man and a woman," Brown said.
Same-sex marriage became a national issue in 1993, after the Hawaii Supreme Court ruled that a ban on same-sex marriages violated the state constitution.

Legislation was introduced recently to allow same-sex marriages in Illinois, and bills from 2011 remain technically active in Hawaii and Minnesota, said Jack Tweedie of the National Council of State Legislatures. It's unclear whether any will see significant action, he said.
An effort is also underway to put a proposal to legalize same-sex marriage on the November ballot in Maine, where voters previously overturned a 2009 state law authorizing same-sex marriage.

In California, meanwhile, a federal appeals court recently ruled against a voter-passed referendum that outlawed same-sex marriage. It said such a ban was unconstitutional and singled out gays and lesbians for discrimination. The case appears to be eventually headed to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Brown said Democratic legislatures -- not voters -- have been behind most of the recent action on same-sex marriage. Upcoming ballot initiatives will give voters an opportunity to refute the polling, and Brown says they will.

"What you will see is that there will be a vote in states representing all the different regions of this country and people are going to have the chance to say, emphatically, 'No'," Brown said.
I'm surprised no one else has posted this yet. But sweet shit right here.
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Old 23rd Feb 2012, 07:33 PM   #2
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Default Re: Maryland passes Same Sex Marriage Legislation and Gov plans to sign it!

8 down, 42 to go
(It'll take forever to get the red states but w/e ).

Edit: Didn't know DC had marriage equality.

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Old 23rd Feb 2012, 08:44 PM   #3
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Default Re: Maryland passes Same Sex Marriage Legislation and Gov plans to sign it!

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8 down, 42 to go
(It'll take forever to get the red states but w/e ).

Edit: Didn't know DC had marriage equality.
momentum is an amazing thing. just think, three states legislatures passed it in the last few weeks (though the pilsbury dough boy did veto it in NJ). We have never had it like that. usually, it might be years between a state getting marriage equality.
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Old 23rd Feb 2012, 08:59 PM   #4
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Default Re: Maryland passes Same Sex Marriage Legislation and Gov plans to sign it!

I love this. One state after another! Getting places!!
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Old 23rd Feb 2012, 11:15 PM   #5
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Default Re: Maryland passes Same Sex Marriage Legislation and Gov plans to sign it!

Aw yeah Keep it up, all you guys in America! Hopefully we'll get it in England soon to
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Old 24th Feb 2012, 07:53 AM   #6
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Default Re: Maryland passes Same Sex Marriage Legislation and Gov plans to sign it!

AWWWWWW YEAH!
We're progressing!
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Old 24th Feb 2012, 10:04 AM   #7
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Default Re: Maryland passes Same Sex Marriage Legislation and Gov plans to sign it!

Progress is progress.
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Old 24th Feb 2012, 12:54 PM   #8
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Default Re: Maryland passes Same Sex Marriage Legislation and Gov plans to sign it!

Though as usual NOM will be trying to get signatures to put it on referendum...I just hope if it does, it'll lose. I don't want to see another Prop 8...
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Old 24th Feb 2012, 02:32 PM   #9
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Default Re: Maryland passes Same Sex Marriage Legislation and Gov plans to sign it!

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Aw yeah Keep it up, all you guys in America! Hopefully we'll get it in England soon to
Now that's what I'm talking about, I don't see why they haven't done more like this before I mean it's just the full union of a couple, I don't see why we have such problems getting it legalized!
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Old 24th Feb 2012, 06:42 PM   #10
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Default Re: Maryland passes Same Sex Marriage Legislation and Gov plans to sign it!

Hell to the YEA

My best friend has been trying to figure out how to keep his LTR in the country for years. Now they can get married.

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Old 26th Feb 2012, 08:01 AM   #11
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Default Re: Maryland passes Same Sex Marriage Legislation and Gov plans to sign it!

Thanks for posting this news! I'm from Maryland! I've never loved my state so much. They've been working on getting this passed for a long time. Go Maryland!
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Old 26th Feb 2012, 09:15 AM   #12
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This is awesome news!
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Old 26th Feb 2012, 11:04 AM   #13
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Default Re: Maryland passes Same Sex Marriage Legislation and Gov plans to sign it!

[QUOTE=TeenninjaXD;1008301]
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Aw yeah Keep it up, all you guys in America! Hopefully we'll get it in England soon to
It is coming to England, Hopefully by 2015, I read it on BBC News
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Old 26th Feb 2012, 11:32 AM   #14
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Default Re: Maryland passes Same Sex Marriage Legislation and Gov plans to sign it!

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Hell to the YEA

My best friend has been trying to figure out how to keep his LTR in the country for years. Now they can get married.
I stand corrected, federal law has to recognize gay marriage before a couple can get citizenship for the foreign partner.
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Old 26th Feb 2012, 04:34 PM   #15
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Default Re: Maryland passes Same Sex Marriage Legislation and Gov plans to sign it!

Very cool! I hope the recall effort doesn't get enough signatures and if it does, I hope it fails. Good luck MD!

I just wish it wasn't so easy to get an issue on the ballot in most states. It's wastes so much time and money to have these stupid things allowed to be voted on. First of all, they should require many more signatures so only the things with widespread strong support will get enough signatures. Then, each initiative with enough signatures should pass a legal review for constitutionality with the full cost paid by the group that wants to get the question on the ballot. That group pays the money up front, and doesn't get the money back whether the initiative is found to be constitutional or not. Of course groups like nom can afford to pay the legal bill, but at least it would help drain their coffers. As a final protection, the initiative should require 2/3 yes vote in the general election. Leaving the question blank counts as a no vote.
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Old 27th Feb 2012, 06:24 AM   #16
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Default Re: Maryland passes Same Sex Marriage Legislation and Gov plans to sign it!

If only mnguy if only...
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Old 27th Feb 2012, 06:11 PM   #17
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Default Re: Maryland passes Same Sex Marriage Legislation and Gov plans to sign it!

I live in Maryland and was actually able to watch the debate and the vote on Thursday, it was very exciting. I know there are already efforts to get the petition for a referendum started, even though the governor has not signed the bill yet. I can't wait, I'm hoping that we can get it passed and then I can see my friends get married (and eventually myself).
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Old 28th Feb 2012, 06:27 PM   #18
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Default Re: Maryland passes Same Sex Marriage Legislation and Gov plans to sign it!

You'll have to wait until at least January, as I understand it. Even longer if the bill gets recalled in November. I hope that January is as long as you and your friends will have to wait. Go MD!
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Old 1st Mar 2012, 11:35 AM   #19
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Default Re: Maryland passes Same Sex Marriage Legislation and Gov plans to sign it!

Yep, as it is written with the amendments marriages may start in January 2013.
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