A Republican controlled House Judiciary Committee has approved a bill to establish civil unions in Colorado. The bill, sponsored by gay Denver Democrats Sen. Pat Steadman and Rep. Mark Ferrandino, passed 6-5 with support from Republican Rep. B.J. Nikkel of Loveland.
Nikkel, the House Whip, voted against the bill last year. “It was simply the right thing to do,” Nikkel said after the vote.
The bill is expected to clear all other committees, and become law if it reaches the full House floor by time the Colorado General Assembly is set to adjourn May 9. Scheduling the bill for a vote is up to House Leadership, Republicans who have voiced opposition to the bill.
At least three additional House Republicans have gone on record saying they’ll vote for the bill if it reaches the full floor: Reps. Kevin Priola, Robert Ramirez, and Laura Bradford.
Ferrandino said there is plenty of time to get the bill to Gov. John Hickenlooper who has vowed to sign the bill.