N.H. rejects attempt to overturn same-sex marriage
 

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posted Friday, March 19, 2010 - Volume 38 Issue 12

N.H. rejects attempt to overturn same-sex marriage
GLAD Cheers Wins for Equality in New Hampshire Legislators, citizens reject campaign to overturn marriage equality

BOSTON - Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders (GLAD) today applauded New Hampshire legislators and citizens for overwhelmingly rejecting a months-long campaign to overturn marriage equality in the state.

"Legislators and the public have spoken," said GLAD executive director Lee Swislow. "It's clear that marriage equality in New Hampshire is here to stay."

The New Hampshire House of Representatives in February defeated by wide margins two separate anti-equality bills. House Bill 1590, which would have repealed marriage equality outright, was defeated by a 210-109 House vote. The House defeated CACR 28, which sought to amend the state constitution to permanently prohibit same-sex couples from marrying, by a margin of 201-135.

Similarly, New Hampshire citizens this month said no to an anti-equality campaign to create pressure for a statewide vote on marriage equality through non-binding resolutions at town meetings. Of the 139 communities that have considered these resolutions, a clear majority of 80 towns (57.6%) have rejected it. Another 86 communities did not discuss the anti-marriage petition at their town meetings. Nine more towns will take up the issue in the coming months.

"We are thrilled that legislators and New Hampshire's citizens have not wavered in their support for the equality of all families," said GLAD staff attorney Janson Wu. "Finally, New Hampshire can move on to more pressing issues, like jobs and the economy."

The anti-equality campaign began at the end of last year, when two state representatives filed HB 1590 and CACR 28. In January 2010 these legislators and allied organizations including the National Organization for Marriage launched the failed town meeting campaign to overturn equality.

GLAD congratulates the coalition of organizations in New Hampshire that has worked over the last three months to defeat this town meeting campaign, including Granite State Progress, NH Freedom to Marry and PFLAG.

New Hampshire's marriage equality law took effect on January 1, 2010. So far, more than 700 same-sex couples have married in the state.

Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders is New England's leading legal organization dedicated to ending discrimination based on sexual orientation, HIV status, and gender identity and expression.


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