Wednesday, March 25, 2009

UPDATE: ACTION: Urge Vermont Governor NOT to Veto Same-Sex Marriage Bill

UPDATE: Vermont Freedom to Marry is also calling for action. There will be a protest at the state house this Friday at 8:45am EST. Check it out!


Gov. Jim Douglas, R-Vermont, says he will veto the same-sex marriage bill if it passes the legislature. He made the public announcement this afternoon.

The Vt. Senate gave its final stamp of approval Tuesday to a bill that would allow same-sex couples to marry in Vermont. Passage came on a voice vote with no debate, one day after the Senate gave the bill preliminary approval on a 26-4 roll call vote. Now the issue moves to the House, where the Judiciary Committee has scheduled a week's worth of testimony on the issue. It is expected to pass.

Governor Douglas has said that he opposes the bill, and this afternoon he announced he plans to veto it. He said he made the announcement to stop speculation and to focus attention on economy.

From the Burlington Press, the Governor is quoted:

"I believe our civil union law serves Vermont well ...I believe that marriage should remain between a man and a woman. ... I'm announcing that I intend to veto this legislation when it reaches my desk."

"The speculation about my decision has added to the anxiety of the moment, and further diverts attention from our most pressing issues, and I cannot allow that to happen. On such an intensely divisive issue as this, I expect all members will vote as their individual conscience dictates and in the best interest of their districts, and not as political leadership requires. That said, I'm sure that legislative leaders would not have advanced this bill if they didn't have the votes to override a veto. I will accept the outcome of their vote, either way.

"In the meantime, I'll turn my attention and energy away from this issue and back to the issue that matters most to Vermonters: Growing our economy and creating more jobs. I respect the passion and opinions of individuals on both sides of this debate, and hope that when the Legislature makes its decision, whatever the outcome may be, we can move our state forward and provide a bright future for our children and our grandchildren," he said.

It is unclear if the 100 votes to override his veto are available.

ACTION: Contact the Governor and tell him NOT to veto the bill. With most of the state congress supporting the bill, to veto it will be acting irresponsibly and abusing his power to advance his view that's held only by the minority.

Phone: 802 828-3333
Email the Governor

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