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California Legislature Passes Bill Legalizing Same-Sex Marriage

California’s legislature yesterday passed a bill that would legalize same-sex marriage by changing the definition of marriage from ‘a civil contract between a man and a woman’ to ‘a civil contract between two persons.’ A spokeswoman for Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger (R), who supports domestic partnerships but not same-sex marriage, said that he believes this issue is best settled by the courts, but did not indicate whether he planned to veto the bill, according to the Washington Post. The bill passed by only one vote.

Dolores Huerta, co-founder of the United Farm Workers, president of the Dolores Huerta Foundation, and a Feminist Majority Foundation board member, was enlisted to help lobby the Assembly in support of the bill. She told the Los Angeles Times that when she spoke with Simon Salinas (D), the deciding vote, she “went back to our old culture, the Latino culture É Respecting other people’s rights to marry who they want is a constitutional right, it’s a human rights, and it’s a privacy right.”

Schwarzenegger has until October 9 to decide whether to sign or veto the bill.

Sources:

Los Angeles Times 9/7/05; Washington Post 9/7/05

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