A bill to legalize gay marriage was
introduced on Wednesday in Maryland's House. It follows a similar
introduction in the Senate on Friday.
Both chambers will debate the
legislation simultaneously to expedite the process during Maryland's
brief 90-day session, which began 3 weeks ago.
House Majority Leader Kumar Barve
submitted the bill in the House, while Senate Majority Leader Rob
Garagiola and Senator Rich Madaleno are behind the Senate version.
Committees assigned to the bill in both
chambers include pro-gay marriage majorities.
Madaleno told On Top Magazine
during a brief telephone interview that the chances of passage are
“the best it's ever been.”
“We had a very successful election in
Maryland on this issue. We brought in a number of new people who are
committed to this issue in both chambers. In the state Senate we
enlarged the Democratic majority, which is a rarity in 2010.”
“It was a transformative election in
Maryland on this issue,” he added.
Democratic Governor Martin O'Malley has
pledged to sign a gay marriage bill into law if it is approved by
Gay marriage is legal in five states –
Connecticut, Iowa, New Hampshire, Massachusetts and Vermont – and
the District of Columbia.
Two additional states – New York and
Rhode Island – will also consider legalizing gay marriage this
majority of people in all three states support marriage equality,
according to a report released Wednesday compiled by the Human Rights
Campaign (HRC), the nation's largest gay rights advocate.