Rhode Island House Speaker Gordon Fox
refuses to say whether he'll enter a civil union, The
Fox and his long-time partner Marcus
LaFond have yet to announce whether they will tie the knot under the
civil unions legislation signed into law on Saturday by Governor
As of Tuesday, clerk's offices
throughout the state had reported few applicants.
Aaron Coutu and Ray Daignault were the
first to apply for a civil union license in the town of Burrillville.
“It is not everything that we could
have wanted, but it is a start,” Couto told the paper.
The couple, together 13 years, added
that they had resisted marrying in nearby Massachusetts or
Connecticut, because “we'd just bring it back and it would have no
Lawmakers shifted from supporting a gay
marriage law to civil unions after it became clear a marriage bill
would not clear the Republican-controlled Senate. An amendment added
in the House by Rep. Arthur J. Corvese which exempts religious
organizations from the requirement that they treat gay couples in a
civil union as they would any other married couple led gay rights
groups to call on the governor to veto the measure.
Fox, who backs marriage equality,
stirred controversy when he dropped support for the marriage bill in
favor of civil unions.
When asked if the lawmaker would be
entering a civil union, House spokesman Larry Berman replied via
email, “That's a private matter.”