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Delaware House Approves Marriage Equality

Delaware House Approves Marriage Equality

Delaware's house of representatives approved a bill to establish legal marriage equality for the state's same-sex couples with a 23-18 vote on Tuesday. The bill, which was introduced less than two weeks ago, will go to the Senate for a vote before heading to the desk of Gov. Jack Markell, who has said he would sign such a bill into law.

Delaware's house of representatives approved a bill to establish legal marriage equality for the state's same-sex couples with a 23-18 vote on Tuesday.

The bill, which was introduced less than two weeks ago, will go to the Senate for a vote before heading to the desk of Gov. Jack Markell, who has said he would sign such a bill into law.

The state has extended civil unions rights to all same-sex couples since 2011. The legislative procedure to make marriages legal for Delaware's same-sex couples is relatively simple. Current law restricts marriage only to two "people of the same gender," but there is no constitutional ban on marriage equality. The proposed legislation will revise the statute language to establish marriage equality. With a strong Democratic base of voters, Democratic control over both the house and senate, and Gov. Markell's endorsement, equality supporters don't anticipate a drawn-out fight toward equality.

The news comes as Rhode Island is also now poised to legalize marriage equality as the state senate there is gearing up to vote on a similar bill this week.

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Michelle Garcia