Rhode Island, USA: What’s Holding Up the Marriage Equality Bill?

Written by scott on February 1st, 2013

Rhode Island Senate president Teresa Paiva WeedSeveral things, according to PBS. There’s this:

Unlike in New York, where Democrats worked for months to peel off a handful of conservatives in the Republican-controlled Senate, proponents must convince Rhode Island’s Senate Democrats to move forward with the bill. Senate President Teresa Paiva-Weed, Senate Majority Leader Dominick Ruggerio and chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee Michael McCaffrey are all Democrats. And all oppose gay marriage.

And this:

Another factor complicating Rhode Island’s gay marriage campaign is the looming prospect of a Supreme Court decision… “If the court said that the 14th Amendment does prohibit California from defining marriage as between a man and a woman, then other state laws would certainly be at risk, other than just California.”…For Rhode Island senators, why cast a potentially politically troublesome vote now when the Supreme Court might simplify the issue for you in the summer?

One bright spot – the Senate President does continue to promise to bring the bill to the Senate floor:

And although it could be months before the Senate even addresses the bill, Paiva-Weed said, “The debate and the discussion in the Senate will be very real, and neither I nor anybody else … really knows what the final outcome of that will be.”

The only question now is when.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Rhode Island.


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