Meanwhile, the House of Representatives approved a similar bill in January. The Senate’s version will return to the House sometime next week before it is sent to Governor Lincoln Chafee, who has promised to sign the bill.
The passage of the bill means all six of New England’s states will have legalized gay marriage, leading the nation in equality. Additionally, Rhode Island will become the tenth state (plus the District of Columbia) to legalize same-sex marriage.
“New England is now complete,” Marc Solomon, national campaign director for Freedom to Marry, said in a statement. “Through court rulings, legislative action, and wins at the ballot, loving and committed couples from Bangor to Burlington, Providence to Portland, and Cambridge to Concord will soon be able to join in the freedom to marry.”