UPDATE: Wednesday’s Senate vote has been shifted to a later hour. See below.
This afternoon Washington’s House Judiciary Committee voted 7 to 6 to send the marriage equality bill (HB 2516 & SB 6239) to the House floor for debate. The bill passed out of its Senate committee late last week and has been scheduled for Senate floor debate this Wednesday.
Although the legislation is thought to have enough votes to pass in both chambers, Wednesday’s vote in the Senate is a crucial one. Washington United invites you to join them in Olympia on Wednesday to show the senators that you support equality and to witness this historic vote. UPDATE: If you go, plan to arrive at
9am. The session is scheduled to go from 10am – Noon 4 pm for debate and vote starting about 6 pm in the State Capitol Senate Gallery in Olympia, WA. RSVP here so that Washington United knows how many people to expect.
Civil marriage licenses are available to same-sex couples in Connecticut, Iowa, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, Vermont and Washington, DC.
A press release from Washington United is below the fold.
Statement by Washington United for Marriage on House Judiciary Committee Vote for Marriage Equality
HJUD passes bill 7-6; full house and senate action imminent
OLYMPIA – Washington United for Marriage, a broad statewide coalition of organizations, congregations, unions and business associations that will work to obtain civil marriage for lesbian and gay couples in Washington State in 2012, today lauded the House Judiciary Committee’s vote in favor of advancing marriage equality legislation in Washington State. The measure passed by a vote of 7-6.
“We thank Chair Pedersen and the members of the Judiciary Committee who supported marriage equality today,” said Lacey All, Chair of Washington United for Marriage. “As the bill continues to progress in both chambers in Olympia, it is clear that momentum is on our side. The stories of love, honor, commitment and family that our legislators are hearing from their constituents continue to be the single most important factor that sets us apart from those who oppose this bill.”
The full senate will debate and vote on the legislation this Wednesday, with full house action to occur shortly thereafter. The bill would then head to Gov. Chris Gregoire’s desk for her signature, which she has indicated she will do. Opponents wishing to challenge the new law would have until early June to collect 120,557 valid signatures – the amount required to place a referendum on the November 2012 ballot.
Washington United for Marriage is a coalition of organizations, congregations, unions, and business associations working together to secure civil marriage for loving, committed gay and lesbian couples. To find more information and learn how you can help, visit WashingtonUnitedForMarriage.org. Engage with Washington United for Marriage on social media at Twitter.com/WA4Marriage and at Facebook.com/WashingtonUnited.