Rhode Island first lady Stephanie
Chafee has announced she'll officiate over a civil union for a gay
couple, the Associated Press reported.
Chafee will officiate over the civil
union of Lynn McKinney and Ron Margolin at their November 5 ceremony
The men first asked Governor Lincoln
Chafee – a backer of gay marriage who earlier this year took heat
for supporting and signing into law the state's civil unions law –
but he was unable to attend due to a previous engagement.
McKinney and Margolin, who have been
together for 32 years, are close friends of the Chafees and political
supporters of Mr. Chafee.
The state's civil unions law, which
took effect during the summer, has been criticized. Many gay couples
say they'll take a pass on the union and wait for full marriage.
“Rhode Island's civil union law,
enacted over the strong protests of the community it was designed to
benefit, has been a fiasco,” said the Rhode Island chapter of the
American Civil Liberties Union in
a report released last month.
The couple noted that the Chafees are
long-time gay rights allies.