Posted by AzBlueMeanie:
The state of Hawaii may be the next state to authorize same sex-sex marriages -- if the New Mexico Supreme Court doesn't beat them to it. the Washington Post reports, Hawaii likely next to legalize same-sex marriage:
Hawaii Gov. Neil Abercrombie (D) has called the state legislature back into special session to vote on legalizing same-sex marriage, a step that likely means he’s corralled the necessary votes to pass a bill.
Democrats have overwhelming majorities in both the state House and Senate, but some Democratic legislators weren’t on board with a same-sex marriage bill. Party leaders met in late August to count the votes; Abercrombie said he would call a special session if legislators could agree on language that would withstand a court challenge.
“The merits of holding a special session include the opportunity for the Legislature to focus squarely on this important issue, without having to divert attention to the hundreds of other bills introduced during a regular session,” Abercrombie said in a statement.
Hawaii was one of the first states to put a ban on same-sex marriages in its constitution, back in 1998. But in 2011, the legislature legalized civil unions for same-sex couples. Now, with Democrats controlling 44 of 51 state House seats and all but one of the 25 seats in the state Senate, the state is likely headed for a full reversal.
The legislature will meet Oct. 28 to consider the bill.
Arizona voters rejected a constitutional ban on civil unions for same-sex couples in 2006, but then approved a constitutional amendment defining marriage as between one man and one woman in 2008. Arizona should follow Hawaii's example of "evolving" on this civil rights issue, and repeal this stain of state-sanctioned invidious discrimination against gays and lesbians in our constitution, which denies Arizona citizens the "basic civil rights of man" and the fundamental freedom of marriage. Loving v. Virginia, 388 U.S. 1 (1967).
Stay tuned for an announcement about a ballot initiative for 2016 coming next sweek.