House Committee Votes In Favor Of Marriage Equality Bill

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ) — Our state could be on the verge of history. A committee voted 25-18 in favor of a bill that will legalize same-sex marriages in Maryland.

Political reporter Pat Warren has details on the vote.

The House Judiciary Committee and the House Health and Government Operations Committee met Tuesday afternoon to vote on Gov. Martin O’Malley’s bill legalizing same-sex marriage in Maryland.

After passing through a panel of a few dozen lawmakers, legislation to allow same-sex unions is expected to be introduced to the full chamber on Thursday.

The bill moves to the House floor with the support of at least one Republican, Delegate Robert Costa.

Costa voted to move the bill out of committee Tuesday, a day after Gov. Martin O’Malley said the support of GOP lawmakers could be critical to passing the legislation.

The two panels heard the bill jointly in a nearly 11-hour hearing last Friday evening.

Same-sex marriage advocates packed Lawyer’s Mall on Monday night, calling on delegates to vote in their favor or letting them marry with no consideration for gender.

Two weeks ago, it was the advocates for traditional marriage also in huge numbers calling on those same delegates to stand up for marriage as one man, one woman.

O’Malley kicked off the session by introducing a bill that changes the definition of marriage but also provides religious liberties. No religious organization will be required to perform same-sex marriages.

Even with the law, traditional marriage advocates fear challenges in court.

The governor and others in favor of same-sex marriage testified in Friday’s House committee hearing that it is in the best interest of the children of gay and lesbian couples that their parents be allowed to marry. That notion was answered by traditionalists who contend the greater benefit for children is to be raised by a mom and dad.

Should the House and state Senate sign off on the bill, Maryland could become the eighth state to legalize gay marriage.

More from Pat Warren
  • Dan

    Why is this such an issue? I am more upset about the higher taxes and gas prices than allowing same sex couples marriage rights.

    Really this is getting out of hand. Pass the bill so we can work on more important issues.

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  • Wayne



    Wayne you are a prime example of IGNORANCE RULING AGAIN.

    • Brian

      IGNORANCE is that you gays have gotten this far! Its oblivious that lame duck O’Malley is gunning for a congressional position in a gay district.

      • oh for heavens sake

        oblivious, is it?

  • Jessica Ward

    it’s about time we have equal rights for all!

  • tylerjake

    I think it’s a slap in the face to compare marriage rights for gays to what blacks went through 50 years ago or more. What law is stopping gays from sitting at a lunch counter, living in a certain neighborhood, shopping at a particular store…etc? However, that is what blacks faced. So to compare “marriage rights for gays” to civil rights is totally WRONG. Gay people should just call it a civil union and be done with it. Very few people would have an issue with the term “CU”. It seems that all the radicals on the left have to have the title of “marriage” without thinking about any of the religious connotations attached to it. Then people wonder why this country is so bitter and divided. We fight issues like this while everything else falls apart and we fall further behind.

    • my heavens

      you’re right. it shouldn’t even be an issue. all people should be allowed to get married in whatever religious institution supports it and the government should have no say in it at all….including the male/female unions. The only laws on the books regarding unions of any kind should be to protect those who are incapable of making informed, rational decisions about their relationships, I.e., children, or the impaired.

      here’s the bottom line (snicker), gay couples are going to call their unions MARRIAGE whether you like it or not…whether they can legally claim it as such is irrelevant. They will introduce themselves as MARRIED… this is my HUSBAND and this is my WIFE. You can take your pitiful miserly ownership of a WORD (I own the word “word”, by the way, and it has a very special connotation in my church so,… you can’t use it anymore) and savor it….savor it when you read an article about how gay marriages statistically last longer than hetero marriages….because you know what? the media is going to use the word marriage, too. They are not going to wordsmith to please a bunch of sissies who can’t allow human beings to live in peace because it makes them “uncomfortable”. HA. MARRIED MARRIED MARRIED…my friends, Sue and Kim arer MARRIED and no matter how much you hate that, they are still married…according to them, their friends, their families, and the God that they believe made them in his image. Your legal imaginary “ownership” of the word means NOTHING.

      Remember, you can not use the word “word” because it’s mine. I love it. You can’t use it.

  • mr.right

    we need to vote these idiots out of office this was never about equal rights but about agenda and just like every time there is a short fall these officials raise our taxes a a drop of a hat, they have forced this down the people’s throats

  • Bruce

    Why are the children of gay couples an issue? If we were all gay there wouldn’t be any children.
    Let’s do it like God intended……..One man and one woman.

  • Beth Rowe

    well if god intended it to be like that then the thought would have never been allowed to cross our minds and two. if your getting reliogus what about divorce isnt that against the bible and yet i happens every day to some people even 2 or three times. and then children what about all the single moms and dads. apprently they arent being raised by a mom and dad are they. to be honest i would perfer it be allowed and move on, and spend our time with much bigger issues like the fact of the gas tax and how our state is basicly going to poop.

  • Beth Rowe

    @jessica ward
    thanks for your support

  • Ed Smith

    What the hell are our law makers thinking? I can’t believe I actually voted for some of these folks. Oh well, maybe they will allow people to marry their pets next. After all there are a lot voters out there who own pets.

    • oh for heavens sake

      Yes, because animals are consenting adults with the ability to make rational decisions about their relationships. Are you seriously that obtuse?

  • Kelly

    This is so sad. “tylerjake”, I agree with your comment entirely.

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