New Hampshire set for divisive gay marriage vote -
Posted on April 28, 2009
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New Hampshire moves to the forefront of America’s debate on gay marriage on Wednesday when the state Senate will decide whether to approve a bill to legalize same-sex marriage and send it to the governor.
By a vote of 3-2 on Thursday, New Hampshire’s Senate Judiciary Committee said the bill was “inexpedient” to legislate, recommending the full senate defeat it.
The committee’s chairman, Senator Deborah Reynolds, said New Hampshire took a major step in legalizing civil unions last year — the fourth state in the country to do so — and needs some time to “build consensus on this issue”.
The Democrat joined two Republicans to vote against it.
On Wednesday, the committee’s recommendation will get the first vote. Thirteen of the state’s 24 senators are needed to kill the bill. If the senate splits at 12-12 or if a majority wants to keep it alive, a motion to pass could be entertained.
The bill, which would redefine marriage to include same-sex couples and make New Hampshire the fifth state in the country where gay marriage is legal, could also end up tabled, where it could remain in political limbo. If it passes, a likely veto by the governor could derail any Granite State gay marriage law.
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