Civil Liberties

Gay Marriage Legal in Maine


Today Maine became the fourth fifth state to legalize same-sex marriage (not counting California, where a 2008 state Supreme Court ruling with that effect was overturned by a voter-approved constitutional amendment last fall). Gov. John Baldacci signed a bill allowing gay couples to marry less than an hour after the state legislature passed it, saying, "I have come to believe that this is a question of fairness and of equal protection under the law and that a civil union is not equal to civil marriage." The other states where same-sex marriage is or will soon be legal are Massachusetts, Connecticut, Iowa, and Vermont. New Hampshire is expected to follow suit soon, which would make it the second state to allow gay marriage through legislation, as opposed to a court decision.

Last month I explained why I prefer the legislative approach. Last week I noted that public opinion seems to be shifting in favor of same-sex marriage. Other Reason coverage of gay marriage here.