New Hampshire State Representative Jim
Splaine won't seek re-election., the Foster's Daily Democrat
Splaine was the chief backer behind a
bill that recognized gay and lesbian couples with civil unions in
2007 and last year's gay marriage law.
The Democrat has a varied history in
the New Hampshire Legislature, serving in both chambers at various
times. He was the youngest House member when he was elected in 1968.
In announcing his decision not to run
again, the 62-year-old politician cited passage of the gay marriage
law as one of his proudest moments.
“We expanded civil rights by passing
marriage equality,” he said. “I think that was a very important
thing to do for a lot of people. It was an important message for our
young people – that people should be treated with not only
tolerance, but acceptance.”
New Hampshire's gay marriage law took
effect on January 1. Governor John Lynch signed the bill into law
less than an hour after lawmakers gave final approval. With not a
single favorable Republican vote in sight, Democrats in the Senate
were left to do all the heavy lifting.
Opponents continue to push for repeal
of gay marriage in the state. The National Organization for Marriage
(NOM), the nation's most vociferous opponent of gay marriage, has
targeted Lynch's re-election campaign because he signed the bill into
Splaine is one of four openly gay men
elected to the House. Also serving are Dana Hilliard, David Pierce
and Ed Butler.