Washington state is just two senate votes short of legalizing same-sex marriage. But in Washington, even one vote can be hard to come by.
Gov. Christine Gregoire, now in her final year of office, has voiced support for marriage equality. The Democrat-dominated state house overwhelmingly supports equality, too. But in the senate, where the Democrat majority is slimmer, the drive for equality hinges on a shrinking number of undecided legslators. Reuters quotes Sen. Ed Murray, the man behind the legislative push for marriage equality:
“Our gay and lesbian civil rights bill, which took 29 years to pass (in 2006), was always one vote short and I believe this situation is pretty much the same,” said Murray, a gay man who hopes to wed his long-term partner in the state.
“We are grandchildren of people who immigrated and homesteaded this state,” he said. “We hope that after 20 years of basically being engaged together that we would be able to legally marry in our native state.”
Just in case the needed two votes are found, anti-marriage activists are mobilizing to ban same-sex marriage with a November ballot initiative.
According to the Seattle Times, attorney Stephen Pidgeon, of Everett, is seeking to collect the necessary 241,153 signatures demanding such an initiative by the July 6th deadline.