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House gay marriage hearing Wednesday; Senate President Paiva Weed seen as barrier

January 31, 2011

In what will probably be a long slog,  the House Judiciary Committee has scheduled a hearing for Wednesday(Feb. 2) on the gay marriage legislation sponsored by Rep. Art Handy, D-Cranston, and supported by House Speaker Gordon Fox, D-Providence.

The hearing is scheduled for House Judiciary at the rise of the House, which is generally about 4:30 p.m. in these winter days of sparse floor action. It will be held in room 313 on the third floor of the State House. The hearing will also be televised on Capitol Television (channel 15 for Cox Communications customers and channel 34 for Verizon customers.

The word at the State House is that the legislation – which has the support of Governor Chafee – has the votes to pass the House but is in jeopardy in the Senate. While Fox, who is openly gay, has been vocal in his support, Senate President Teresa Paiva Weed, D-Newport has been silent on the issue and is widely viewed in the marriage equality community as a major roadblock to approval of the legislation. When asked about it y a reporter Sunday night at a fund-raiser for U.S. Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse,  Paiva Weed quickly walked away without answering.

Massachusetts, Connecticut, New Hampshire and Vermont all recognize same-sex unions. In Rhode Island, the most vocal opposition so far has come from the Rev. Thomas Tobin, the Roman Catholic Bishop of Providence.

One Comment leave one →
  1. Marie Hennedy permalink
    February 8, 2011 12:55 pm

    At its national convention in June of 2010, the League of Women Voters endorsed Marriage Equality as a civil right for all Americans.

    Marie Hennedy

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