Colorado House Approves Civil Union Bill in Bipartisan Vote; Outcome Not in Doubt for Final Vote Tomorrow

Colorado is poised to approve  SB-11, the Colorado Civil Union Act, in a final recorded vote on Tuesday after an initial vote approving it today, the Denver Post reports:

ColoradoAt least two Republicans support the measure: Cheri Gerou of Evergreen and Carole Murray of Castle Rock.

"What this bill is about is personal freedom and individual liberties," Gerou said. "This is a good conservative bill."

Gov. John Hickenlooper is expected to sign the bill into law this month; it would be implemented May 1.

"This bill is about three simple things," Ferrandino said at the start of the debate. "It's about love, it's about family, and it's about equality under the law."

Said Brad Clark, Executive Director of LGBT rights group One Colorado following the vote:

"This historic victory belongs to the thousands of committed couples across the state, who have worked tirelessly for three years to make it possible for all loving families to have the protection they need to take care of one another.
“cross the country, we’ve seen a sea change in public opinion on this issue. A vast majority of Coloradans support providing committed same-sex couples with the security they need, and these fair-minded folks are glad to see civil unions finally passed. We applaud the bipartisan group of Representatives and Senators who voted to affirm that all families are worthy of respect."

The Senate has already passed the bill. Governor John Hickenlooper has promised to sign it.


  1. BobN says

    In the old days, a “bipartisan vote” meant that the yays and nays (whatever their distribution) were pretty much made up of both parties.

    Today, all it takes is one Republican and the vote is called “bipartisan” even if that one Republican is 1% of the GOP vote and the bill passes with 99% support from Dems.

    “Bipartisan” in circumstances like this is a lie. The more appropriate term would be “near party-line” vote.

  2. Vito says

    For those who don’t understand why this is big here in CO, we currently have a constitutional amendment dating back to 2006 banning equal marriage. While I agree that getting Civil Unions is bittersweet (I just relocated here with my husband from NY), it is a step in the right direction. If SCOTUS doesn’t grant it in June, the earliest we could possibly get marriage is in 2014 and that being a mid-term election is highly iffy. The safest bet would be 2016. So that is 1-3 years without any protections. This offers us some protections while we work on the big goal. So please, stfu with your passive-aggressive comments.

  3. lee says

    exactly vito in most of the country civil unions are the best we can do without a SCOTUS ruling and in some parts even civil unions are imposable to get.

  4. Hawaii Bill says

    Thanks for pointing out the value of Civil Unions Vito. They are an incremental step and have done a LOT to benefit my family here in Hawaii until we get marriage.

  5. KC says

    VITO – thank you for pointing out why civil unions are the best we can do in CO for now. It’s a huge step in the right direction. I would love to see marriage equality here (and everywhere), and it’s sad to think that the votes and support are probably there for it now in CO but it’s not constitutionally possible.

    For those who feel inclined to bash the passage of civil unions in CO, would they prefer to see nothing? Our state government made this a priority in the new session after one lone Republican stopped a vote on it in a special session last year, and it has sailed to a solid victory. I for one think this is newsworthy. Even civil unions are pretty much an impossibility in many states.

  6. Ernie says

    The people of Colorado voted against this, but elected officials made up their own mind on what they wanted to do. So what the Colorado House is saying is that they, not the voter know what is best for all.
    We have all seen situations when you say something about gay rights and you as a straight person get bashed because you say what you belief. So it is OK for you to get bashed for what you have to say but for people gays it is OK to say anything they want. If we want equality then we all need to be able to voice our beliefs.

  7. coguy says

    Ernie – it takes votes to win elected office, and as we’ve seen, 98% of people who support the freedom to marry are reelected.
    And while I respect your right to voice your opinion, until you can point me to a list of ‘christian’ people who have been physically beaten and killed or bullied into suicide, you have not been ‘bashed’.

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