Brian Brown, president of the National Organization for Marriage (NOM), on Wednesday criticized Rhode Island lawmakers for approving a bill legalizing gay marriage in the state.

The measure cleared its final legislative hurdle on Wednesday with a 26-12 vote in the Rhode Island Senate which included the unanimous support of the chamber's GOP caucus. Independent Governor Lincoln Chafee plans to sign the bill into law following a procedural vote in the House next week.

Brown, whose group vociferously opposed passage of the law, said that the Senate had failed its constituents and that the law would hurt children.

(Related: Groups applaud Rhode Island on gay marriage.)

“The Senate has abandoned society's most important institution and put their constituents on a collision course with the law,” said Brown in a blog post. “Lawmakers have allowed themselves to be fooled into thinking they have protected people of faith when in fact they have put those who believe in true marriage in the crosshairs of the law and gay 'marriage' activists. It won't be long before the repercussions begin to be felt.”

“For the first time, the state of Rhode Island is saying to its children they do not deserve both a mother and a father, and are backing a law that is designed to intentionally deprive some kids of either a mom or a dad. It's bad enough when families break down through divorce or death, but it's unconscionable when a state encourages this through policies that deprive children of the love of both a mother and a father. This is a very sad day for Rhode Island.”