Friday, April 15, 2005

Hints from Oregon

It turns out that Oregon Gov. Ted Kulongoski favors civil unions. He campaigned on them, was elected with that on his platform, and now sees the recent state Supreme Court nullification of same-sex marriage licenses as reason to press the issue.

At his request, Senate bill 1000 was already in the works. It provisions include:
Establishes requirements and procedures for entering into civil
union contract. Applies only to civil unions between persons of
same sex. Provides that partners in civil unions have same
privileges, immunities, rights, benefits and responsibilities
under state law as are granted to or imposed on persons who are
or were married.
In Salem, the Statesman Journal recaps the next legislative steps. It quotes the Senate majority leader, Kate Brown, as saying the door is wide open for civil unions after the court decision. As legal experts, she notes that the decision avoided the constitutional issues.

On the House side, Rep. Vicki Berger has not read Senate 1000 yet. She likes the idea. She has sponsored an unrelated bill that outlaws discrimination in employment, housing, and public accommodations based on sexual orientation.

It could be a fun session. The Statesman Journal reports that in the past three decades, the voters have turned down anti-homosexual ballot initiatives repeatedly. On the other hand, the pro-homosexual-rights bills have failed in the legislature.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Very interesting.