A bill that would legalize same-sex marriage in the District of Columbia will be introduced Tuesday, the bill's sponsor, council member David Catania, said on Wednesday night:
"Catania made his announcement before 150 gay rights activists
gathered in Shaw for a rally featuring the Rev. Eric P. Lee, president
of the Los Angeles chapter of the Southern Christian Leadership
Conference. 'We are going to do it now,' Catania told the crowd. 'We are going
to do it now, not for ourselves, but for the young people who are 20
years-old, 16-years-old, 13-years-old.' According to a copy of the bill, the city code would be changed to
state 'marriage is the legally recognized union of two people' and 'any
person … may marry any other eligible person regardless of gender.' Catania's bill, which states religious organizations and officials
have the right not to participate in same-sex marriages, is expected to
pass the council easily when it comes up for a vote around
Thanksgiving. Ten of 13 council members will co-introduce Catania's
bill Tuesday, and Mayor Adrian M. Fenty (D) has pledged to sign it. But the measure still would have to get past Congress, which can overturn District legislation under Home Rule. "
D.C. began recognizing same-sex marriages performed elsewhere on July 7 folowing passage of a bill earlier this year.