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Unless Congress Acts, DC To Legalize Gay Marriage Tomorrow

March 2, 2010 - by Eric Naing

According to the office or Rep. Eleanor Holmes Norton [D, DC-0], today marks the end of a 30-day period in which Congress could act to prevent same-sex marriage from being legal in the nation’s capitol.

Last year, the Washington D.C. city council twice voted to recognize same-sex marriage in the District of Columbia. According to the District’s charter, Congress has 30 legislative days to prevent this from happening by passing a resolution.

Such a resolution (H.J.Res.72) was introduced by Rep. Jason Chaffetz [R, UT-3] but thanks in part to Rep. Norton, the measure has stalled in the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.

Today is the 30th day in the countdown and barring some unlikely Congressional action, gay marriage will be legal in D.C. tomorrow. The first marriage licenses can be issued to same-sex couples tomorrow and the first same-sex marriages could take place March 9 – three business days later.

Another Utah lawmaker, Sen. Bob Bennett [R, UT] tried a different approach to stop legalized gay marriage. Bennet’s S.2980 would let D.C. residents vote on gay marriage in a Proposition 8-style referendum. This idea, however, has been struck down multiple times in court.

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