Hawaii, USA: House Considering Both Banning, Embracing Marriage Equality

Written by scott on January 28th, 2013

Honolulu SkylinePink News says the Hawaii House is considering no fewer than four bills dealing with marriage equality. Two of the bills are from opposing sides:

Democrat Faye P Hanohano is the sole sponsor of House Bill 1109, which seeks to legalise equal marriage in Hawaii. The Bill states, “It is the intent of the legislation to extend to same-sex couples the right to marry and to receive all the same rights, benefits, protections, and responsibilities of marriage as opposite-sex couples receive under the laws of this State.”

Democrat Mike Gabbard and 14 other representatives from both parties have introduced an amendment to the Hawaiian constitution that would limit marriage to heterosexual couples.

The other two bills, polar opposites of each other, are, surprisingly, from the same lawmaker:

Republican John Mizuno has introduced two pieces of legislation, one legalising equal marriage, the other limiting it to heterosexual couples. Mr Mizuno explained that he was personally in favour of “traditional” marriage, but he thought the people of Hawaii should be able to decide democratically.

KITV profiles one gay couple who are looking forward to getting married in Hawaii:

Aaron Escobido-Ortiz and Bruce Lee are have been together for seven years.They say if this newly introduced bill to legalize same-sex marriage in Hawaii passes they will finally not feel like second class citizens. “Born and raised in Hawaii we feel that we deserve to enjoy the equal rights that other couples can enjoy,” said Escobido-Ortiz. The couple believes marriage is key because it would provide them with rights that they say civil unions do not.

Read more: http://www.kitv.com/news/politics/Civil-Union-supporters-push-for-same-sex-marriage/-/8905242/18295132/-/52opohz/-/index.html#ixzz2JKeBLPMN

The last polling we have from Hawaii on marriage equality is from October, 2011, and showed a 49% to 40% split in favor of marriage equality.


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