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Md. Senate Preps For History-Making Debate On Gay Marriage

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ)—Gearing up for a fight. A history-making debate is about to take place in the Maryland Senate over same-sex marriage.

Political reporter Pat Warren has more on reaction to Thursday’s vote approving gay marriage in Maryland.

Lawmakers and citizens are drawing battle lines. Advocates of traditional marriage say a rally a few years ago is small compared to what may be coming now that same-sex marriage is gaining ground.

“I can’t tell you the amount of calls I’ve taken and people e-mailing just saying ‘Is this actually going on in the state of Maryland?’ and I say ‘Yep, it actually is,’” said Derek McCoy, Maryland Family Alliance and Family Council. “You gotta speak up and let your voice be heard.”

Gay marriage supporters who rallied Monday are just as determined to see their cause prevail.

“We want our rights, and we want to be able to get married here,” said one gay rights advocate.

Senate President Mike Miller predicts an emotional debate, which could go on non-stop for days.

“We’ll just see how it goes. If people get angry and act like fools then I’ll treat ‘em like angry fools and say we’ll stay here this weekend to get things done one way or the other,” said Miller. ”If there’s no rancor and people want to talk, I’ll let the bill be special ordered and then we’ll finally bring it to a vote.”

Two key senators Rob Gariogiola, who sponsored the bill, and Nancy Jacobs, who leads the opposition, have already predicted the outcome of the vote.

“I’m fairly confident that it’s going to pass in the Senate,” Gariogiola said.

“I’m sadly confident,” Jacobs said.

The Senate President says he expects the debate will begin a week from Tuesday.

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