Gay Marriage | News | Vermont

Vermont Governor Says He Will Veto Same-Sex Marriage Bill

 Vermont Governor Jim Douglas said today he will veto a same-sex marriage bill if it comes to his desk, WCAX reports:

Douglas"He made the public announcement this afternoon. The Vt. Senate gave its final stamp of approval Tuesday to a bill that would allow same-sex couples to marry in Vermont. Passage came on a voice vote with no debate, one day after the Senate gave the bill preliminary approval on a 26-4 roll call vote. Now the issue moves to the House, where the Judiciary Committee has scheduled a week's worth of testimony on the issue. It is expected to pass. Governor Douglas has said that he opposes the bill, and this afternoon he announced he plans to veto it. He said he made the announcement to stop speculation and to focus attention on economy."


Douglas has said he's opposed to same-sex marriage legislation but had until today refused to say what he'd do if they bill reached his desk. Lawmakers had expressed confidence that Douglas would let the bill become law without his signature or veto.

According to Vermont's Legislative website, "If he vetoes the bill it is returned together with the veto message to the  Clerk of the House or Secretary of the Senate. Then that house must consider it and if it is passed by a two-thirds vote of each house, then it goes to the Secretary of States office and becomes a permanent part of the statutes. If either house fails to get a two-thirds vote the bill is dead."

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  1. I just called the Governor's office; his assistants seemed frustrated and annoyed when they learned why I was calling.

    It takes less than two minutes. Call his office and don't stop!

    800 649-6825 (toll-free in VT only)

    Posted by: Jonc | Mar 25, 2009 4:01:32 PM

  2. Er, my last comment, I meant "override the VETO," not the bill. Sry.

    Posted by: Jamie | Mar 25, 2009 4:13:18 PM

  3. he's a douche. Gay marriages would bolster the economy

    Posted by: Ousslander | Mar 25, 2009 4:18:29 PM

  4. Sent a letter to the old geezer.

    Posted by: George | Mar 25, 2009 4:18:49 PM

  5. What really saddens me is this:

    Most states are in a budget deficit. It costs money to get a marriage license. So that will actually HELP the deficit by bringing in more money to the state. When you add in the honeymoons and folks who will travel in from other states to have legal ceremonies, that will be an economic boon to many small businesses.

    It is possible to help civil rights along AND help the economy at the same time.

    Posted by: DR | Mar 25, 2009 4:19:14 PM

  6. jersey

    "Republicans really make it difficult not to hate them.'

    you said it all right there

    Posted by: jimmyboyo | Mar 25, 2009 4:23:43 PM

  7. where are the LOG CABINs to tell their republican govenor to snap out of it?

    instead of focusing on Obama and Ed henry, you need to put your foucus on your republican fellow's ass.

    Posted by: johnosahon | Mar 25, 2009 4:23:57 PM

  8. So another Republican wants gays to remain 2nd class citizen. This is news? Come on Vermont legislators, override that veto and show your state to be a beacon of freedom for all.

    Posted by: Brian | Mar 25, 2009 4:24:16 PM

  9. So back to the guy who on an earlier posting about this bragging about how in all states that were allowing gay marriage were run by Republicans (as if somehow they did something to move that along), I say F*** YOU.

    Here is the second example of a Republican Governor vetoing a bill from the legislature that represents the citizens of that state.


    Posted by: Alex | Mar 25, 2009 4:42:16 PM

  10. I just sent him a letter asking him to reconsider. Also mentioning that I travel a lot and I would encourage people not to visit/spend their money in a state with a Govenor that would waste legislatives time and go against the majority of what their people want. I hope that this can be worked out. Our Gov in CA did the same shit to us, which is why it's such a mess here now.

    Posted by: SSD | Mar 25, 2009 4:57:16 PM

  11. Hey Governor how about we focus on your economy by NO LONGER VACATIONING IN VT!

    Posted by: MCnNYC | Mar 25, 2009 4:58:34 PM

  12. It's painfully obvious that this is a personal attack on James Neiley. The Governor of Vermont is terrified of a 17 year-old high school kid!

    Posted by: David Ehrenstein | Mar 25, 2009 5:02:44 PM

  13. I just sent an email, and all of you should too. Phone calls are even better.

    These bastards are on the wrong side of history, and it will only be a matter of time when history books put these people in the same column as slave owners, segregationists, and those who fought against suffrage and interracial marriage.

    Posted by: tstas | Mar 25, 2009 5:08:27 PM

  14. shitbag.

    Posted by: samwise | Mar 25, 2009 5:10:19 PM

  15. So what's the veto message going to say: "I told you I wanted you to concentrate on the economy so I am vetoing this out of spite"? How lame is that?

    Posted by: Mike | Mar 25, 2009 6:17:09 PM

  16. @ Jersey ^^^^. The Republicans are about as bad as they get, but no one beats Democrats like Bill Clinton who not only championed and signed DOMA but boasted about it to get bigot votes to get reelected. And just like Obama torpedoing same sex marriage with his infamous comment "gawd's in the mix" who said it to pick up bigot votes. gawd alone knows what Obama will do to get reelected

    The differences between Democrats and Republicans in office are that some resemble the American Landrace breed and some are Angeln Saddlebacks. But they're all pigs.

    Posted by: Bill Perdue | Mar 25, 2009 7:18:22 PM

  17. As a Vermonter, I am, of course, infuriated with Gov. Douglas, who lives in the same town I do and graduated from the college my b/f teaches at. This is an especially asshole move because: he has never previously jumped the legislative process to indicate whether he'll veto; he waited till this far along in the process to throw out the V-word; the public is in favor of marriage equality; the legislature, by a wide majority, is in favor of marriage equality. Saying he'll veto only increases the distraction factor, his main state reason for opposing the bill (other than 2nd class CUs are good enough for the gay folks).

    It is possible that he thinks there is a veto-proof majority so he's doing this to cover his political ass with the wingnut minority (i.e. it will become law but he won't be responsible). In any event, we and our supporters are a force to be reckoned with in VT, and we won't take this lying down. VT Freedom to Marry will be striving for a veto-proof House majority until the vote happens. (We already have it in the Senate.) Meanwhile, I'll be contacting the appropriate people and sticking pins in my Gov. Douglas voodoo doll.

    And working to defeat the bastard next election. Last time round we had 2 weak candidates splitting the liberal vote. This time we need one strong candidate.

    Posted by: Ernie | Mar 25, 2009 7:24:17 PM

  18. What a total asshole he turns out to be. I'm embarrassed he has a degree from my department at my college (before my time).

    "These beliefs are deeply held, passionately expressed" -- yeah, like that makes them OK? My grandparents had deeply held and passionately expressed beliefs about race in the South. They were still racists. Douglas, too, is on the wrong side of history, and his grandkids will be ashamed of his legacy.

    I'm hoping the veto gets overridden, but I'm for reviving the old VT slogan, "Remember in November" to kick his ass out of office (if only our Dems and Progressives can get their shit together and field one good candidate). We'll come back here and remind you towleroad friends when that time comes!

    Posted by: Kevinvt | Mar 25, 2009 7:49:39 PM

  19. I stood in his office while some dozen gay vermonters explained why this is important and why marriage and civil unions are not the same. He now acts like he had his ears plugged at the time. Sometimes he just lies and says he's never heard why they're not equal. He's lying.

    Posted by: Kevinvt | Mar 25, 2009 8:03:04 PM

  20. Bill Purdue, the marriage bill in VT has nothing to do with Obama or Clinton. It has to do with a Republican governor being an asshole.

    Bash Democrats all you like, but they--along with our Progressives and a few brave moderate Republicans--are the independent minded ones who will overwhelmingly pass a marriage equality bill in VT. Our governor is scum, but our Democrats and other supporters are not, so spare us your foolish propaganda.

    Posted by: Ernie | Mar 25, 2009 8:05:17 PM

  21. This is the guy who -- minutes after McCain selected MORON Sarah Palin as his V/P pick -- declared what a WONDERFUL V/P she'd make. Which is to say, Douglas is a Republican through-and-through -- and one THIS Vermonter will work to defeat next election. Bye, Doug!

    Posted by: Robert Galik | Mar 25, 2009 8:45:43 PM

  22. This is ridonkulous. But lookee, he's hanging himself with barbed wire because if he vetoes it, he'll likely be humiliated by being overruled. So what are his other political aspirations, if any?

    Posted by: TANK | Mar 26, 2009 1:30:28 AM

  23. and vermont's about maple syrup and pancakes...maple candy and new yorkers who have homes there. Boutique gourmet and skiing...not this. It's too cute for this.

    Posted by: TANK | Mar 26, 2009 1:37:12 AM

  24. He one the last election with over 50% of the vote, hopefully they'll run someone with a better chance against him next time :(

    Posted by: Paul | Mar 26, 2009 5:47:14 AM

  25. The Vermont Freedom to Marry Taskforce is asking people to PLEASE email Douglas and express your OUTRAGE at his actions.

    I would hope we could get this story out there and get millions of people to get up off their butt and let Douglas know that he is on the WRONG SIDE OF HISTORY on this one.

    You can email the governor directly at this link:

    Posted by: Larry_in_Vermont | Mar 26, 2009 6:53:52 AM

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