Washington State to Recognize Same-Sex Unions from Elsewhere

Washington The Washington legislature today approved recognition of out-of-state same-sex marriages and similar unions, the AP reports:

"On a 28-19 vote, the Senate cleared the last hurdle for the bill. It now heads to Gov. Chris Gregoire's desk. Under the measure, gay marriages performed elsewhere would be recognized as domestic partnerships here, as well as domestic partnerships performed in other states. Currently, five states, the District of Columbia and Canada allow same-sex marriages. Washington becomes the fourth state to approve a similar bill, following Rhode Island, New York and Maryland. The measure enjoyed wide support among Democrats. It passed the House 58-39, mostly on party-line votes."

Comments

  1. Bruno says

    The AP has its head its up ass. There’s nothing similar between this law and NY, RI and MD.

  2. Tyler says

    @greg

    1) The situations in those four states are all different, but none of them are statutory solutions like this is, so they’re all weaker. NY is the strongest, as it has a high court ruling saying same-sex marriages are recognized as marriages. MD has an AG opinion, which hasn’t been tested in the courts and might be overturned there, saying the same thing. RI has an AG opinion that has been implicitly rejected by its Supreme Court saying the same thing.

    2) More importantly, this recognizes foreign same-sex marriages as state registered domestic partnerships in the state. No practical distinction, but a huge symbolic distinction.

  3. zackben says

    In other news: African-Americans allowed on the back half of buses! Women recognized as having a right to work in kitchens!

  4. AJ says

    Extending the full battery of rights that voters successfully granted at the ballot box, overcoming finger-wagging from the LGBT activist community, fearmongering from the religious right and apathy in the press?

    Oh, good job, us!

  5. BobN says

    “The AP has its head its up ass.”

    Perhaps it was up there looking for the paragraph break that would have made the two sentences you object to more obviously correct.

    Sentence 1 is true: Currently, five states, the District of Columbia and Canada allow same-sex marriages.

    Sentence 2 is true: Washington becomes the fourth state to approve a similar bill, following Rhode Island, New York and Maryland.

    Putting sentence 2 right after sentence 1, with no break, confuses the reader.

    So does the term “mostly on party lines”. They could easily — and used to religiously — report votes by party. By not giving us the actual numbers, they help hide how much the GOP obstructs our rights.

  6. says

    “The measure enjoyed wide support among Democrats. It passed the House 58-39, mostly on party-line votes.”

    Surprise, surprise. I guess the “more-inclusive” Republican party hasn’t received the memo from the LCR’s and GOProud yet.

  7. StillmarriedinCA says

    Andy–Will you please stop omitting California when you list the states with same-sex marriage? True, nobody else can get married here right now but there are 18,000 LEGALLY MARRIED same-sex couples here–more than nearly all the other states combined. It’s ridiculous to include a handful of marriages in Iowa and leave out thousands in California. It lets the NOM people win a victory that they lost. They prevented any more marriages from taking place but they still have to accept that there are 36,000 gays and lesbians in legal marriages here. That was a victory for us and we should not miss an opportunity to remind them (and ourselves) of that.
    Thanks!
    Jeffrey

  8. JAMES in Toronto says

    I give up. This is the second time that I was making an intelligent reply to a post, and I got bounced into some daft full screen adv. that wiped out my type.

    THIS SUCKS.

    Why was Canada explicitly listed? We due to be annexed again?

  9. Sam says

    Thank you Washington state and to those who worked hard to get this bill passed. Thanks again for continuing to show progress towards full equality, even when states like Indiana choose to go backwards.

  10. ratbastard says

    @James in Toronto,

    RELAX b*tch. You Canadians are FAR MORE obsessed about America [and why America and Americans don’t pay enough attention to Canada!] than the other way around. And there’s FAR MORE nasty anti-Americanism [directly at American people, not just the government] than there’s anti-Canadian attitudes among Americans.

    We share the continent of NORTH AMERICA, James. We share a massive mostly unguarded border. We culturally, demographically, etc., are almost identical [99% of non-Americans and non-Canadians can’t tell Americans and Canadians apart].

    And American forces invaded Canada hundreds of years ago when Canada was a BRITISH COLONY. America was also a British Colony. And there was an on-again, off-again war going on. British forces operating out of Canada also invaded the U.S., and even managed to burn down the new capital city, Washington. And the assassination of Abraham Lincoln was formulated and financed in Canada [Montreal]. So spare me your one-sided, ignorant Canadian nationalism.

  11. Matthew N says

    If DOMA is repealed, there will be a practical difference between what was passed in Washington State and what exists in New York state. In NY State, a same-sex marriage from another state/country is recognized as a *marriage*. In WA State, it is only recognized as a domestic partnerships, which will lead to no federal benefits when DOMA is repealed.

    It’s a good step forward, and I don’t see a referendum on same-sex marriage too far off (1-2 years). But the article leave a lot to be desired in terms of accuracy. It also makes it sound like Canada is the only other country in the world that allowed same-sex marriage.

  12. Chris says

    @ratbastard I think you just conclusively disproved your own point. Also, I live 40 miles from the Canadien border and visit B.C. often. From my experience, Americans (here) definitely spend more time making fun of Canada than vice versa.

    Re: the post, as a Washington resident, I’m happy about this.

  13. Atlanta Guy says

    I grew up in Washington. The reason Canada is mentioned is simply because it borders Washington state and is therefore the closest jurisdiction were same-sex couples can get married. I would think this would be obvious. And btw, most folks from the Evergreen State love B.C. and our Canadian neighbors.

  14. Michael says

    @Chris: When I lived in Washington state, Canuck baiting was quite common even in workplace situations where managers should know better. Also common was the border police holding Canadian workers in jail for a night or two when re-entering the US, just because they could…

  15. John says

    I found it odd that Canada was mentioned, while other countries (e.g. The Netherlands, South Africa…) weren’t. I know the propinquity with Washington may be the reason it was singled out, but it makes it sound like Canada is the only country with gay marriage laws. And there are states, such as New Jersey and Illinois that have Civl Union laws — which, though they are not called “marriage”, are close to it. I’d love to see a more thoroughly vetted story posted here.

  16. JAMES in Toronto says

    Atlanta Guy: “The reason Canada is mentioned is simply because it borders Washington state and is therefore the closest jurisdiction were same-sex couples can get married. I would think this would be obvious.”

    Actually, not obvious from the other side of the continent, but yes… that’s a good reason for mention that does make sense to me. Without thinking in those terms, it just seemed to be an odd list.

    …and no, nationalism is not one of my character flaws. LOL

  17. Dairyqueen says

    I am one of those 18,000 couples too. I am getting tired of always saying out loud “and the 18,000 in CA”. We were the ones that started “stonewall 2.0″ back after Prop 8 failed. So we should get the respect and props.

  18. Bruno says

    @Bobin: And when did New York, Maryland, and Rhode Island ever approve “similar” bills to what Washington state just approved? As far as I know, none of those states even have domestic partnership laws, and none of those states have ever approved a bill recognizing out of state gay unions of any kind. What New York and Maryland have done is had politicians order that out of state same sex marriages (and not even DP’s/CU’s if I’m correct) be recognized in state, even though they cannot be performed there. And in Rhode Island I’m not sure anything like that has even occurred. So the AP has printed something not only misleading, but false, and you seem to believe in what they’ve written.