Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Voters Nixed on Same-sex 'Marriage' in D.C.

A ruling yesterday by D.C. elections officials suggests that only Congress or the courts can thwart the gathering momentum to legalize same-sex marriage in the District.

-- From "Council, Not Voters, Gets Say-So on Non-D.C. Unions" by Tim Craig, Washington Post Staff Writer 6/16/09

In a decision that reaffirms the rights of gays and lesbians under the city's civil rights law, the Board of Elections and Ethics blocked a proposal to let voters decide whether to recognize same-sex marriages performed in other jurisdictions.

Unless a court intervenes, same-sex couples who marry in other states or countries will be considered legally married in the District as well in less than a month. And by the end of the year, the D.C. Council is expected to approve a bill to allow same-sex couples to be married in the city.

The opinion states that city officials would "authorize discrimination" if they were to permit a referendum on whether to afford same-sex couples married elsewhere the same rights as opposite-sex couples.

Board officials note that yesterday's ruling applies only to the question of whether a vote can be held on the bill to recognize same-sex marriages performed elsewhere. But the opinion by Errol R. Arthur, chairman of the board, and member Charles R. Lowery Jr., strongly suggests that the board would be skeptical of any initiative that would deny gays and lesbians any rights that straight people have.

To read the entire article, CLICK HERE.