Equal Marriage rights in northern New England moving forward

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    Mar 20, 2009 12:51 PM GMT
    There are four important votes this week and next on extending equal marriage rights, two in New Hampshire and two in Vermont.

    This week the New Hampshire House Judiciary Committee deadlocked 10 - 10 on the "gay marriage" bill. The bill now goes to the full House for a vote next week. The full House is expected to vote next Tuesday.

    Today the Vermont Senate Judiciary Committee (5 members) is expected to vote on granting equal marriage rights. Of the 5 members, 3 voted for Civil Unions in 2000, one voted against, and 1 is a new member (and a co-sponsor of the marriage bill). The full Senate is expected to vote next week.

    In Maine, the equal marriage legislation has been referred to committee. No vote is yet scheduled.



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    Mar 20, 2009 3:08 PM GMT
    Breaking News

    MONTPELIER -- The [Vermont] Senate Judiciary Committee voted unanimously this morning to recommend a same-sex marriage bill to the full Senate
    .icon_biggrin.gif

    The committee vote is the first step toward passage of the bill that would give same-sex couples the equal rights of heterosexual married couples. The full Senate will take up the bill and hold a first vote on it Monday afternoon. Should it pass, the bill would then go before the House.
    Committee members Richard Sears, D-Bennington; Ann Cummings, D-Montpelier, Kevin Mullin, R-Rutland, John Campbell, D-Windsor and Alice Nitka, D-Windsor each voted to recommend the bill. Prior to that vote, a measure recommending a statewide referendum for March 2010 on the matter was defeated, 4-1, with only Mullin in support.




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    Mar 23, 2009 12:01 PM GMT
    The full Vermont Senate is scheduled to vote on same sex marriage legislation today (Monday). The bill is expected to pass easily, and may get as many as 25 votes (out of a 30 member Senate).
    The Vermont House Judiciary Committee will begin hearing testimony on the bill on Tuesday.
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    Mar 23, 2009 12:03 PM GMT
    Maine will send it to the people. The board is set--the pieces are moving. We will vote on it in the fall. I have a feeling it will be close. I also have a feeling we will lose.
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    Mar 23, 2009 2:16 PM GMT
    cjcscuba1984 saidMaine will send it to the people. The board is set--the pieces are moving. We will vote on it in the fall. I have a feeling it will be close. I also have a feeling we will lose.


    We are fortunate in Vermont, in that it will not be put to a public vote. Only the legislature can authorize a non-binding vote, and there is no chance that will happen. Even if it was put to a vote, there is a better than even chance it would pass anyway.
    Good luck in Maine !
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    Mar 23, 2009 2:29 PM GMT
    Good luck Vermont and Maine. My fingers are crossed.
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    Mar 23, 2009 10:06 PM GMT
    Breaking news!

    The Vermont Senate voted 26-4 in favor of same sex marriage this afternoon. An amendment to put it to a state referendum failed, 11-19.
    The bill now goes to the Vermont House. Hearings by the House Judiciary Committee are scheduled to start tomorrow.
    The Vermont General Assembly leadership have put the bill on a fast track and have made it a priority for this session.

    Note: This was a major victory, especially the fact that only 4 Senators voted against gay marriage!!!!!!icon_biggrin.gif
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    Mar 27, 2009 10:26 AM GMT
    New Hampshire news:

    http://www.hrcbackstory.org/

    Today the New Hampshire House of Representatives voted 186-179 for House Bill 436, legislation to recognize marriage for lesbian and gay couples in the state. The bill now moves to the senate, where Democrats hold a 14-9 lead. Democratic Governor John Lynch opposes gay marriage but has not said specifically that he would veto the measure.

    In 2006, HRC worked closely with legislators, community groups and local leaders to help elect fair-minded majorities to both the New Hampshire House of Representatives and Senate, which subsequently voted to pass civil unions legislation in 2007. This year, HRC has mobilized members to support House Bill 436.

    Earlier this week, Vermont’s state Senate voted 26-4 to pass legislation that would allow lesbian and gay couples to marry in Vermont, so New Hampshire or Vermont could be the first state to adopt marriage equality legislatively.