I join these leaders with steadfast support of equal rights. Now is the time to end same-sex marriage discrimination against countless families — to allow them to receive a Washington marriage license, the same right given heterosexual couples.
The collective statement from Washington’s leaders is clear, committed couples of any sexual orientation should be allowed to declare their love through marriage.
Same-sex marriage would be the final chapter in our equality efforts.
I remember the issues we confronted years ago when we sought to pass civil rights for gays and lesbians before we finally succeeding after a 29 year battle in 2006, ending discrimination in employment and housing against LGBT individuals. Spokane supported this effort when they upheld non-discrimination by city vote.
Since then, we’ve passed not one, but three domestic partnership bills, giving same-sex couples the same legal rights and responsibilities as those married. And the sky has not fallen.
With polls showing the majority of the public values equality for all, it is time we move forward on this issue.
During this time of economic insecurity, it is more important than ever for Washington families to all have the same rights, responsibilities, protections and titles under the law.
If signed into law, Washington would be the seventh state in the country to expand full marriage rights to same-sex couples.
I remain committed to seeing this monumental effort through, but recognize our first job is closing our budget shortfall. The Legislature is full of tremendously hardworking people that will address both of these critical issues.