Civil rights have really taken center stage today, yes? First, Vermont legalized gay marriage after Governor Jim Douglas vetoed it on Monday. (An aside: will there be some sort of Ben & Jerry's party today in the Castro?) Then, just this afternoon, Washington D.C. says it will recognize same-sex marriage from other states. According to the Washington Post:
Domestic partnerships are already legal in the nation's capital. But today's vote, billed as an important milestone in gay rights, explicitly recognizes relocated gay married couples as married.
The initial vote was 12-0. The unanimous vote sets the stage for future debate on legalizing same-sex marriage in the District and a clash with Congress, which approves the city's laws under Home Rule. The council is expected to take a final vote on the legislation next month.
This bill, introduced by D.C. Council member Phil Mendelson (D), stops short of legalizing same-sex marriage in the District. Of course, it will have to go though the House of Representatives for approval. This will make for an interesting showdown. And if today's vote in D.C. is allowed to stand, they'll then be like New York state where gay marriage isn't legal, but they will recognize gay marriages from other places.