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US: Former Vermont governor recounts same-sex marriage veto in memoir

Katie Dupere September 2, 2014

Former Vermont governor Jim Douglas recounts vetoing a same-sex marriage law in his new memoir.

According to the Associate Press, Douglas says in the memoir that he was acting on conscience on 7 April 2009 when he vetoed the law that had been passed by Vermont’s legislature.

The state legislature overrode the veto that same day, bringing marriage equality to Vermont despite the governor’s opposition.

In the memoir, Douglas says despite having gay friends, he believes “the institution of marriage is worth preserving in its traditional form.”

Douglas has said recently in interviews that he is not sure what decision he would make if faced with the law now.

Douglas said, according to AP, that he initially intended to avoid writing about the veto in his memoir, but that he thought “people would say, ‘He’s running away from that.’”

Douglas told the Addison Independent in 2002 that he did not have second thoughts on the veto, saying: “There was no right that gay couples had under the civil union law that was enhanced under the marriage law.

“It was really a matter of nomenclature and a distinction I felt was worth preserving.”

The legislation legalising marriage in the state went into effect in September 2009.

Vermont was the first state to allow civil unions in July 2000.

More: Americas, civil partnership, equal marriage, former governor, gay marriage, gay wedding, governor, Jim Douglas, lesbian marriage, lesbian wedding, marriage, marriage ban, marriage equality, memoir, same sex marriage, Same-sex wedding, The Vermont Way: A Republican Governor Leads America’s Most Liberal State, US, Vermont, veto, wedding

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