On a Roll!

BREAKING: Washington Becomes 7th State to Legalize Marriage Equality

One day after the Ninth Circuit Court invalidated California’s ban on same-sex marriage as a violation of the state’s equal protection clause, the Washington state legislature this evening easily passed a bill providing full marriage equality.

In a prepared statement, Gov. Christine Gregoire, a Democrat who has pledged to sign the bill, announced:

With today’s vote, we tell the nation that Washington state will no longer deny our citizens the opportunity to marry the person they love. We tell every child of same-sex couples that their family is every bit as equal and important as all other families in our state. And we take a major step toward completing a long and important journey to end discrimination based on sexual orientation.

The road to equality is hardly without obstacles, of course, even in the politically and culturally liberal West Coast. Marriage equality opponents are appealing the California decision to the U.S. Supreme Court, and  the always predictably anti-gay Maggie Gallagher, co-founder of the National Organization for Marriage, vowed to present same-sex marriage to Washington State voters. NOM is funding efforts to hold a referendum in November aimed at repealing the Washington law before it would go into effect.

“This decision fires up the base and the resentment that elites, political and judicial, are imposing gay marriage without the consent of the governed,” Gallagher told the Chicago Tribune. “I think it’s going to make it easier, not harder, to get the signatures and to put it to the people.”

photo by R. Alton