New Hampshire lawmakers are scheduled to vote later this afternoon on a measure that would repeal the state’s marriage equality law on March 21.
The expected vote in the House of Representatives will take place a week after state Rep. David Bates (R-Windham) said he will add an amendment to House Bill 437 that would ask voters in a non-binding referendum whether they support the reinstatement of the state’s civil unions law that took effect in 2007. Craig Stowell, chair of Standing Up for New Hampshire Families, blasted Bates’ latest proposal as a “desperate, last minute Hail Mary pass.”
A WMUR/University of New Hampshire Survey Center poll in early February found that 59 percent of state residents oppose the measure. Governor John Lynch, who signed the marriage equality law in 2009, has vowed to veto Bates’ measure.
Meanwhile, the House last Thursday voted 246-85 against a bill that would have allowed a business owner or an employee to refuse to perform a same-sex wedding because of their religious or moral objections. The New Hampshire Union Leader reported that House Deputy Majority Leader Shawn Jasper (R-Hudson) was among the several Republican lawmakers who spoke against House Bill 1264 before the vote.
Log onto the House’s website to watch the vote live.