Thursday, February 24, 2011

Maryland State Senate Passes Marriage Bill

The state of Maryland has taken another step closer to LGBT equality, with the state senate approving a marriage equality bill 25-21.  The bill now goes to the House of Delegates; if it passes there, Gov. Martin O'Malley has pledged to sign the bill into law.

This is terrific news: the institution of marriage is yet another aspect of daily life in which gay people are discriminated against: this bill would take Marylanders closer than ever to equality, although the "Defense of Marriage Act" would have to be repealed before gay couples in that state could get full benefits under federal law.

Still, though, marriage opponents are going to wage a rough battle against equality, and it is likely that they will gain enough petition signatures to put marriage on the ballot in Maryland.  As I've said in the past, let's not wait to see if that becomes a reality: let's start the grassroots organizing today so that we will be ready for NOM and their kind when they rear their ugly, hateful heads in Maryland.

But for now, congratulations to the 24 Democrats and 1 Republican who stood up for equal rights and LGBT families in today's vote.  Next stop: the House of Delegates.

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