Maryland Delegate Jill Carter said
Wednesday she is ready to vote in favor of a gay marriage bill.
Carter is one of the two members of the
House Judiciary Committee who missed Tuesday's early morning vote on
the legislation, forcing Chairman Joseph Vallario, who opposes the
gay marriage bill, to delay the vote. The bill, which
was approved by the Senate last week, was on track for a final
vote in the House by Friday. That estimate looks less likely after
In a statement released to the
Associated Press, Carter said she “has always been and remains a
supporter of marriage equality.” She added that she was
withholding her support to bring attention to other issues, including
“It was always my intention to vote
for the bill,” she told Baltimore NBC affiliate WBAL.
A slim majority of committee members,
including Carter and the second no-show, Delegate Tiffany Alston, had
previously pledged their support for the measure.
Alston, a freshman Democrat, told the
Baltimore Sun on Tuesday that she was reconsidering her
“It's a very important, deeply
personal issue,” she told the paper. “I need time to think it
through. I need time to pray.”
In a statement released Wednesday,
Alston said she believed “all people should be treated equally
regardless of their sexual orientation.”
“As a law maker it is my duty and
privilege to serve the people and try to find balance and equity
where inequity exits. This duty is compounded when your personal
religious belief are contrary to what you believe to be fundamentally
right for society.”
“Accordingly, I have resolved that if
and when the chairman calls the vote I will be ready to vote based on
what I believe is right,” she added.