Thursday, May 2, 2013
A bill legalizing same-sex marriage passed 56-15 in the RI State House today.
Sixteen years after legislation was initially introduced in Rhode Island, same-sex marriage is now legal in the Ocean State. On Thursday afternoon, May 2, the Rhode Island House of Representatives passed the legislation by a vote of 56-15. Barrington's representatives voted for and against the bill. Rep. Joy Hearn favored it; Rep. Jan Malik did not. "This is a great day in Rhode Island, not just for the many Rhode Island families who will now get the recognition and equality that they so richly deserve, and not only for the thousands who have been fighting for decades for the dignity and rights of all citizens," said House Speaker Gordon Fox, the first openly gay House Speaker in the nation who has cosponsored the legislation every year…
Wednesday, April 24, 2013
With the Senate's approval, the bill now goes back to the House for approval, then to Gov. Lincoln Chafee for his signature.
In a 26-12 vote, the Rhode Island Senate on Wednesday approved a bill that would allow same-sex marriage in the state, the last in New England to approve such a measure. Barrington Sen. David Bates voted in favor of the bill as expected after the GOP caucus announced yesterday that all 5 Republican members of the Senate supported same-sex marriage. The House of Representatives voted 51-19 on Jan. 25 to approve that chamber's version of the bill; the legislation now goes to Gov. Lincoln Chafee, who has pledged his support. [In two ceremonial measures, the Senate also approved the House bill, 26-12, and sent its bill to the House for approval.] With Senate President Teresa Paiva-Weed's announcement of the vote count at 5:45 pm, Rhode …
Tuesday, April 23, 2013
State Senate GOP Caucus, including Barrington's David Bates, becomes first in the nation to stand united for marriage equality.
All five Republicans in the 38-member Rhode Island Senate, including David Bates of Barrington/East Providence, have committed to support the same-sex marriage bill being voted on today by the State Senate Judiciary Committee. On Tuesday morning, the Rhode Island Senate Republican Caucus announced its support for a bill that would grant marriage rights for gay and lesbian couples, becoming the first unanimous decision by a legislative caucus of either party in the nation to back marriage equality legislation. The State Senate Judiciary Committee is expected to approve the legislation at 3 p.m. today. “This is a game changer,” said Chad Griffin, president of the Human Rights Campaign (HRC). “Never before has an entire legislative caucus…
Friday, January 25, 2013
Barrington's two state representatives split over the legislation that will allow same-gender marriages in RI; the final vote was 51-19 in favor.
Friday, January 25
In an historic 51-19 vote, the Rhode Island House of Representatives approved a bill allowing same-sex marriage Thursday afternoon. The bill now goes to the state Senate, where leadership has said no action will be taken on it until spring. Barrington Reps. Jan Malik and Joy Hearn split in their vote, according to the official tally. Malik voted against the legislation; Hearn, a co-sponsore, voted for it. “Obviously, this issue is about fairness and allowing all Rhode Islanders to have equal access to the rights and responsibilities that come with marriage, but marriage is about so much more than legal protections," said Rep. Art Handy (D-Dist. 18, Cranston), the bill's primary sponsor. This was the 11th year Handy had introduced same …
Thursday, January 24, 2013
The proposal to guarantee marriage rights to all Rhode Islanders now moves onto the state Senate.
Thursday, January 24
Rhode Island moved one step closer to marriage equality Thursday as the House of Representatives voted 51 to 19 today to allow same-sex couples to marry in the state, the Legislature announced in a release. Rep. Arthur Handy, who has introduced the bill for each of the last 11 years, said the proposal is about justice and equity for same-sex couples. “Obviously, this issue is about fairness and allowing all Rhode Islanders to have equal access to the rights and responsibilities that come with marriage, but marriage is about so much more than legal protections," Handy said in a release. "My wife and I have been married since 1997, and as we’ve worked together to raise our son, the value of having a committed, strong family has become more …
Tuesday, January 22, 2013
The state House Judiciary Committee has scheduled a vote on the controversial measure for 3 pm on Jan. 22.
Tuesday, January 22
A vote by the State House Judiciary committee on a bill allowing same-sex marriage in Rhode Island is scheduled for a vote this afternoon at 3 p.m., the General Assembly Press Bureau announced. The "Equal Access to Marriage" bill — submitted in the House by Cranston Rep. Arthur Handy and co-sponsored by Rep. Kenneth A. Marshall (D-Dist. 68, Bristol, Warren) — would make Rhode Island the last state in New England to allow same-sex marriages, and would recognize any civil unions as marriages. According to a release from the General Assembly Press Bureau, "no further testimony will be taken at this hearing." The agenda for the hearing today, Jan. 22, is attached to this article. What's your take? Is it about time the government stops …
Tuesday, January 8, 2013
A Cranston legislator has submitted a bill in the state General Assembly to approve marriage for same-sex couples — and we're looking for your feedback.
Tuesday, January 8
Rhode Island now remains the only state in New England that forbids same-sex marriage — but that soon could change if the General Assembly votes to approve new legislation. On Jan. 3, legislation to allow same-gender couples to marry in Rhode Island was introduced in both the Rhode Island House and Senate, with a pledge from House Speaker Gordon Fox for a floor vote early in the session. Fox, the first co-sponsor of the House bill, is openly gay. The legislation has broad support, with 42 members of the House signing on as sponsors and 11 members of the Senate. Among the Barrington delegation to the General Assembly, Rep. Joy Hearn added her name as a sponsor of the bill in her chamber. Rep. Arthur Handy (D-Dist. 18, Cranston), the …