US state of Washington legalizes gay marriage
US: The US state of Washington became the seventh in the nation to
legalize same-sex marriage when Governor Christine Gregoire on Monday
signed into law a bill approved last week by lawmakers.
“I’m proud our same-sex couples will no longer be treated as separate
but equal,” Gregoire said, as gay marriage supporters who gathered for
the signing ceremony in the state capital Olympia applauded. Six US
states -- Connecticut, Iowa, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York and
Vermont -- plus the District of Columbia already allow same-sex
The law will go into effect on June 7 in the northwestern US state
unless opponents manage to gather enough signatures to hold a referendum
on overturning the measure.
If opponents are successful, the law would be held in limbo until the
results of the referendum, to be held on November 6 along with the
presidential and congressional elections, are tabulated.
Same-sex marriage remains a highly controversial issue in the United
Lawmakers in the state of New Jersey, many of them Democrats, on
Monday approved legislation legalizing same-sex marriage -- but
Republican Governor Chris Christie has said he will veto the measure.
A group of 80 US mayors -- including New York’s Michael Bloomberg,
Chicago’s Rahm Emanuel, Antonio Villaraigosa from Los Angeles and Annise
Parker from Houston -- last month unveiled a campaign to win support for
same sex marriage.