The news via Equality Maryland:
This afternoon, after careful consideration, the House Judiciary Committee voted 12-10 in favor of sending Senate Bill 116 – the Civil Marriage Protection Act – for consideration by the full House of Delegates. This is an exciting step that adds even more momentum behind marriage equality in the state of Maryland.
Majority Leader, Delegate Kumar Barve (D-17), Lead Sponsor
“To me, this legislation is all about family, liberty and respect. I respect the civil liberties of same-sex couples who wish to solemnize their relations and families in the eyes of the law. I also respect the values of those in our society who are not comfortable with same-sex relationships. Surely there is enough space in America for all of us to build our lives and families as we choose and live next to each other.”
Chairman Vallario, who opposes same-sex marriage, saves the bill by becoming the 12th committee vote. Alston voted no.
Earlier in the week, Delegate Alston said:
“I believe all people should be treated equally regardless of their sexual orientation”
Arora voted yes, as promised. Although, he wants voters to decide our civil rights.
The House will vote next week.
UPDATE: Here’s the vote count, courtesy of Equality Maryland:
Joseph F. Vallario, Jr., Chair – YES
Kathleen M. Dumais, Vice-Chair – YES
Tiffany T. Alston _ NO
Curtis S. (Curt) Anderson _ YES
Sam Arora – YES
Jill P. Carter – YES
Luke H. Clippinger _ YES
John W. E. Cluster, Jr. _ NO
Frank M. Conaway, Jr. – YES
Don H. Dwyer, Jr. -NO
Michael J. Hough – NO
Kevin Kelly – NO
Susan C. Lee – YES
Susan K. McComas – NO
Michael A. McDermott – NO
Keiffer J. Mitchell, Jr. – YES
Neil C. Parrott – NO
Luiz R. S. Simmons – YES
Michael D. Smigiel, Sr. – NO
Kriselda Valderrama – YES
Geraldine Valentino-Smith – NO
Jeffrey D. Waldstreicher – YES