Marriage in Maryland: We’re almost there

Update: After a few relatively minor amendments, the bill moved forward in the Senate by a vote of 25 to 22. A final vote has been scheduled for Thursday.

We’re in the midst of what will likely be the most important week for marriage in Maryland yet.
 
Yesterday morning, the Maryland Senate had its first reading on SB 116, the Religious Freedom and Civil Marriage Protection Act — a bill that would extend marriage to gay and lesbian couples. The Senate is debating the bill this week starting today, and a vote will likely happen as well, which means that Senators need to hear from their supportive constituents now more than ever! 24 Senators have committed to voting yes on SB116—the exact number we need for the bill to pass.
 
And in case this crucial vote wasn’t enough marriage excitement in Annapolis for the week, the House of Delegates will hold a committee hearing on HB175 — the house equivalent of SB 116.
 
You can bet that with all of this momentum for marriage, our opposition is in full force this week contacting Maryland legislators in opposition to the marriage bill.
 
So we have to keep the pressure up! If you’re a Marylander, click here to email your Senator now, or if you’d like to be directly connected to your Senator’s office by phone, the Friendfactor team has you covered. Click here and in a matter of seconds, you’ll be patched through to your Senator’s office!


All week, pro-equality Marylanders will be at the capital in Annapolis showing their support for the freedom to marry. Will you be a part of this historic week and sign up for a shift at the statehouse?
 The possibilities are:

Tuesday, February 22, 9:00 am to 11:00 am


Thursday, February 24, 9:00 am to 2:00 pm


Thursday, February 24, 2:00 pm to 9:00 pm


Friday, February 25, 9:00 am to 2:00 pm


Friday, February 25, 2:00 pm to 9:00 pm
 

If you can commit to one or more of these shifts, please e-mail aimee@equalitymaryland.org.
 

We’re on the cusp of a major victory in Maryland. And I know that together, we’ll make 2011 the year that loving and committed gay and lesbian couples finally have the freedom to marry in the Free State.