Del. House Approves Same-Sex Marriage Bill - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Del. House Approves Same-Sex Marriage Bill

Posted:

DOVER, Del. (WBOC) - Delaware is closer than ever to legalizing same-sex marriage. The State House of Representatives voted in favor of the bill Tuesday.

The final vote was 23 to 18 - with multiple Democrats voting against it. There was a loud cheer from supporters when the result was read.

Much of the debate on the bill centered around its protections - not for the couples - but for other people.

Some questioned if the bill's section letting clergy members not perform weddings if they don't want to was enough.

"The protections in this bill are not adequate in my professional opinion," said Jordan Lorence, a lawyer called as a witness by House Republicans. "The issues go far beyond ordering a pastor, priest or rabbi to perform a ceremony."

The bill's sponsor, Rep. Melanie George-Smith, D-Bear, says it does protect free speech.

"Nobody will be punished for saying what they believe in. That was very clearly put in this bill on the free speech issue."

People in Dover had mixed feelings about expanding the definition of marriage in Delaware.

"I don't feel it's anyone's business but the parties involved," Vincent Gerecitano, of Dover, said. "I think they were made just the same as everyone else.

"I just don't understand the whole gay thing," said Ken Abraham, also of Dover. "It seems unnatural. But as retired attorney, I'd have to say marriage should be legalized.

As the debate in the house chamber continued, it turned to support and opposition of the entire goal of the bill.

"The majority of my constituents and the people who contact me feel very strongly to protect the current definition of marriage as between one man and one woman," said Rep. Ruth Briggs-King, R-Georgetown.

"I'm asking my colleagues today to do the right thing by Delawareans and give them the right to marry and have the equal respect and dignity of that marriage," Rep. George-Smith said.

This bill is on a legislative fast track. It heads to the state Senate next. Gov. Jack Markell has pledged to sign it if the senate passes it.

  • Delmarvawide NewsDelmarvawide NewsMore>>

  • Second Public Hearing Brings More Opposition

    Second Public Hearing Brings More Opposition

    Tuesday, July 22 2014 8:44 PM EDT2014-07-23 00:44:48 GMT
    When Planning and Zoning held their public hearing on July 10, hundreds of people came out to voice their support and opposition to a country music festival in the Harbeson area. Approximately two weeks later on Tuesday afternoon about 100 showed up to voice their opinion, primarily in opposition. The County Council heard from dozens of neighbors who said they were staunchly against the festival, citing potential problems with noise, traffic, pollution, and crime.More
    When Planning and Zoning held their public hearing on July 10, hundreds of people came out to voice their support and opposition to a country music festival in the Harbeson area. Approximately two weeks later on Tuesday afternoon about 100 showed up to voice their opinion, primarily in opposition. The County Council heard from dozens of neighbors who said they were staunchly against the festival, citing potential problems with noise, traffic, pollution, and crime.More
  • Laurel Man Arrested for Multiple Bank Robberies

    Laurel Man Arrested for Multiple Bank Robberies

    Tuesday, July 22 2014 8:43 PM EDT2014-07-23 00:43:45 GMT
    A Laurel, Delaware man has been arrested following an investigation into multiple armed bank robberies on the Eastern Shore.More
    A Laurel, Delaware man has been arrested following an investigation into multiple armed bank robberies on the Eastern Shore.More
  • Updated: Fire Ruins Historical Hebron Church

    Updated: Fire Ruins Historical Hebron Church

    Tuesday, July 22 2014 8:43 PM EDT2014-07-23 00:43:25 GMT
    Fire has destroyed the historical St. Paul's Episcopal Church located on westbound Route 50 in Hebron.More
    Authorities are investigating a Tuesday fire that destroyed the historical St. Paul's Episcopal Church at the corner of Memory Gardens Lane and Route 50 in Hebron, Md. Preliminary damage is estimated at approximately $500,000.More
  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Updated: Fire Ruins Historical Hebron Church

    Updated: Fire Ruins Historical Hebron Church

    Tuesday, July 22 2014 8:43 PM EDT2014-07-23 00:43:25 GMT
    Fire has destroyed the historical St. Paul's Episcopal Church located on westbound Route 50 in Hebron.More
    Authorities are investigating a Tuesday fire that destroyed the historical St. Paul's Episcopal Church at the corner of Memory Gardens Lane and Route 50 in Hebron, Md. Preliminary damage is estimated at approximately $500,000.More
  • Two Killed in Del. Crash

    Two Killed in Del. Crash

    Tuesday, July 22 2014 11:45 AM EDT2014-07-22 15:45:19 GMT
    Delaware State Police say two Dover men were killed Monday night after the tow truck they were riding in went off the road and crashed into a telephone pole near Little Creek.More
    Delaware State Police say two Dover men were killed Monday night after the tow truck they were riding in went off the road and crashed into a telephone pole near Little Creek. More
  • Federal Appeals Court Deals Blow to Health Law

    Federal Appeals Court Deals Blow to Health Law

    Tuesday, July 22 2014 11:46 AM EDT2014-07-22 15:46:35 GMT
    A federal appeals court has delivered a serious setback to President Barack Obama's health care law, potentially derailing subsidies for many low- and middle-income people who have bought policies.More
    A federal appeals court has delivered a serious setback to President Barack Obama's health care law, potentially derailing subsidies for many low- and middle-income people who have bought policies.More
Powered by WorldNow

All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Worldnow and WBOC. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service