Monday, June 20, 2005

Gay Marriage Gains New Life In California

Assemblyman Mark Leno, an openly gay Democrat in California, plans to revive a measure that would legalize same-sex marriage. Less than 3 weeks ago, the bill died in the California Assembly when it fell 4 votes short of gaining the simple majority it needed to pass the 80 member house.
Leno's bill would have changed the California family code to define marriage as between "two persons" instead of a man and a woman. Leno is going to try a legislative maneuver know as "gut and amend" to change the language of the failed bill. If the new measure passes, the bill would then make its way to the California State Senate, and then possibly to Governor Schwarzenegger's desk.
Massachusett's legalization of gay marriage was by an order of the court. If Leno's bill becomes law, California would be the only state to have gay marriage passed as law. Gay lobyists see this as a possible major defeat for President Bush.
Let's keep our eye on what happens in California. While other states are putting forth legislation to ban gay marriage, California is now on the forefront to legalize gay marriage.
I will be visiting San Francisco soon, and I am sure this will be the topic of many news stories. It will be interesting to talk to people and get a first hand perspective on gay marriage in California.

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