25 Mar UPDATE: Vermont Gay Marriage Bill Passes Senate, Moves to House
The following was received by the National Organization for Marriage as an Urgent Action Alert:
If we don’t act now, by the end of the week, Vermont could become the first state to adopt same-sex marriage legislatively — without a court order hanging over their heads.
I need two things from you today. It’ll only take about 5 minutes, but your action could make the difference for marriage, not just in Vermont, but in the nation. Once the floodgates open in Vermont, it will be easier for other state legislatures to follow suit.
We need to remind these legislators that their constituents are watching, and that they will be held accountable for their votes. We can’t let them forget that 17 Vermont legislators lost their seats over civil unions in 2000. Urge them to adopt a proposed amendment sending the same-sex marriage bill to the people of Vermont for a vote. Tell them this is too important an issue to ramrod through in just a few days — with no real public debate.
Here’s where things stand: Despite our best efforts, the Vermont Senate passed Senate Bill 115 Monday night on a vote of 26-4. The vote sends the bill to the Vermont House, where the leadership is expected to try to push it through quickly — a committee vote is likely within the next day or two and a vote of the full House may come before the end of the week.
While the Democratic leadership claims to have enough support to pass the bill, our efforts this week are critical. Working together, we can stop this, and at the same time put Vermont legislators on notice that the nation is watching, and that their constituents care about marriage. Even if the leadership succeeds in ramming the bill through this week, the margin of passage is critical. Governor Douglas opposes same-sex marriage, and is considering a veto. The House vote is certain to be closer than the Senate vote, and we need to keep the pressure on.
One legislator told the Burlington Free Press yesterday that he’d received 300 calls and emails about the same-sex marriage bill (an unheard-of number in Vermont!)– and that supporters of same-sex marriage outnumbered opponents by a 2-1 margin! Let’s correct the record, and make sure that every pro-marriage Vermonter contacts his or her legislators today!
Here’s what I need you to do:
1. Contact the members of the Vermont House. If you live in Vermont, your action today is critical. Even if you’ve taken action before, please use this hyperlink to send a message to all 150 members of the Vermont House of Representatives, urging them to respect the voice of all Vermonters, and send this to the people for a vote — not rush it through in just a few days.
Even if you don’t live in Vermont, please send a message letting the Vermont House know that the nation is watching, and urging them to respect the voices of their constituents — let the people vote!
2. Forward this message to every person you know in Vermont! We have three days to get every pro-marriage person in Vermont to contact their legislators, and we need your help!
Thank you for all you’re doing to stand for marriage. The need is urgent, and we couldn’t do it without your help.