The New Hampshire Legislature has
approved a bill that once signed into law will make it the sixth
state to legalize gay marriage in the United States, Reuters
Coverage: New Hampshire Poised to Pass Gay Marriage Bill.
House members approved the bill that
grants gay and lesbian couples the right to marry just hours after
senators had agreed to it this morning.
The House endorsed the bill on a 198 to
176 vote. Senators embraced the bill with a stronger 14 to 10 vote
that came down along party lines with all Democrats in support and
all Republicans in opposition.
The bill includes the religious
protections sought by Governor John Lynch, who is expected to sign
the bill, possibly as early as today.
If signed into law, New Hampshire would
become the sixth state to allow gay marriage and only the third state
to legalize the institution legislatively, instead of by court order.