A special session of the Colorado legislature was called to debate a civil-unions bill, which had cleared multiple key hurdles. But once again Republicans defeated the measure in a 5-4 vote along party lines.
According to the Denver Post, a GOP lawmaker with a gay son cast a deciding vote against the bill. Writes the Post:
Even committee member Rep. Don Coram, R-Montrose, who has a gay son, said he couldn’t vote for the bill. He cited the 2006 vote by Coloradans to ban gay marriage.
“What you’re asking me to do here is invalidate the vote of six years ago,” Coram said. “I’m concerned that the gay community is being used as a political pawn. For four years we had a Democrat governor, a Democrat House and a Democrat Senate. The issue never came up. It only came up when we got a split house. I think that’s wrong.”
Said Representative Mark Ferrandino of Denver (right), an openly gay sponsor of the bill, according to the New York Times:
“We saw this bill die even though a majority of members of the Senate and a majority of members of the House and the governor, as well as a vast majority of Coloradans, want to see this become law. It is very unfortunate. Families across Colorado are going to have to wait longer for equal rights in our state.”
Click through for more photos from the heartbreaking event.
Photos via Daniel Gonzales