Vermont Governor Jim Douglas has promised he will veto a gay marriage bill if it passes the Legislature, reports The Burlington Free Press.

Douglas made his pledge at a media event that took place at 2:15PM.

“I believe our civil union law serves Vermont well,” the Republican told reporters in Montpelier. “I believe that marriage should remain between a man and a woman. ... I'm announcing that I intend to veto this legislation when it reaches my desk.”

Senators approved the bill with an overwhelming 26 to 4 vote late Monday after listening to a week's worth of testimony on the issue (a final vote on Tuesday was more a formality). House leaders immediately began committee hearings on the bill the next day.

Many reports had suggested that Douglas, who has previously expressed his opposition to gay marriage, would allow the bill to become law without his signature.

“The speculation about my decision has added to the anxiety of the moment, and further diverts attention from our most pressing issues, and I cannot allow that to happen,” he said.