Whether a second attempt to repeal New
Hampshire's gay marriage law will be made next year could depend
largely on who is elected governor in the fall.
Rep. David Bates, the Republican whose
bill to repeal the state's 2-year-old gay marriage law and replace it
with civil unions died on the House floor Wednesday, told the
AP that a governor sympathetic to repeal could alter the debate.
“If we have a governor in place more
favorable to traditional marriage, that will change the dynamic
considerably,” he said.
Governor John Lynch, a Democrat who
signed the gay marriage law, promised to veto the repeal bill if
approved by lawmakers.
Roughly 100 Republicans in the House,
where Democrats are outnumbered by three to one, voted against the
Bates insisted that without the threat
of a veto – which requires a two-thirds majority to override –
“winning a majority vote is well within the realm of
The four candidates vying to govern the
state are evenly divided on the issue.
Democrats Jackie Cilley and Maggie
Hassan voted for the law in 2009 as state senators.
“I strongly oppose any repeal of
marriage equality,” Hassan said in a statement on Wednesday.
“In my mind it is a settled issue,”
Cilley said the following day.
Republicans Kevin Smith and Ovide
Lamontagne say they would sign the bill as governor, but neither
believe it should be a priority.
“I support traditional marriage and
if the Legislature were to put a bill on my desk to support that
definition, I would sign it,” Smith stated. “That being said, it
is not [on] my agenda as governor.”
Lamontage holds a similar view, telling
Hampton Patch that repeal is “not my top priority.”
“I believe in traditional marriage as
well, but it's not my top priority,” he said. “And I think like
anything else it's going to work its way out.”
“Let's focus on what really matters
to people right on the Seacoast and around the state, and that's job
creation, that's creating an environment that'll launch us into a new
era of prosperity,” Lamontagne added.
play key role in defeating New Hampshire gay marriage repeal.)