A vote in the New Hampshire House on a bill that would repeal the state's 2-year-old gay marriage law has been delayed.

Republican leaders who control the House said in December that the vote would likely come up soon after the January 10 presidential primary.

According to the Eagle Tribune, House Majority Leader D.J. Bettencourt announced the delay on Tuesday.

“The legislation will not be considered for a floor vote until February,” he wrote in an email. “We must deal with some critical financial and economic-related legislation first, as well as legislative redistricting, prior to any discussion of gay marriage.”

The delay surprised Rep. Laura Pantelakos, a Portsmouth Democrat, who said she was prepared to vote on the bill during Wednesday's legislative session.

“I was definitely looking to vote on it today,” she said. “I don't know why it was put off. I assume someone has said they won't get enough votes for it and want to push it back. It's not a good way to do business.”

Approval off Rep. David Bates' bill would make New Hampshire the first state to legislatively overturn a gay marriage law.

Bates' bill would replace the law with civil unions for any unmarried adults, including relatives, and would allow anyone to refuse to recognize such unions.

Approximately 2,000 gay and lesbian couples have married since the law took effect.