Opponents of Washington’s new same sex marriage law have submitted enough signatures to place a repeal of the law on the November ballot.
Preserve Marriage Washington on Wednesday submitted more than 200,000 signatures to the state’s attorney general, well over the number of signatures they needed to qualify Referendum 74 for the ballot. State officials will review the signatures over the next week.
“We are so pleased and proud to have supported the Preserve Marriage Washington effort to qualify R-74, and we commend them for the historic signature gathering campaign they have mounted,” said Brian Brown, National Organization for Marriage president and a member of the Executive Committee of Preserve Marriage Washington. “The signature gathering effort produced more signatures than have ever been collected by any referendum committee in the history of the state. This shows the broad and deep support that traditional marriage enjoys, and sets the stage for a tremendous victory for marriage this November.”
Prohibitions on same sex marriage have passed every time they have been put to a statewide vote. In April, North Carolina became the latest state to ban same sex marriage through a referendum.
Washington Gov. Chris Gregoire (D) signed the same sex marriage bill into law in February. The law was set to take effect on June 7.
“As governor for more than seven years, this is one of my proudest moments,” Gregoire said at the time. “And most surely today is a proud day in the history of the Legislature and the state of Washington. It is a day historians will mark as a milestone for equal rights. A day when we did what was right, we did what was just, and we did what was fair. We stood up for equality and we did it together – Republicans and Democrats, gay and straight, young and old, and a variety of religious faiths. I’m proud of who and what we are in this state.”
Massachusetts, Connecticut, Iowa, New Hampshire, Vermont, New York, and the District of Columbia have all legalized same sex marriages.