Maryland House of Delegates to vote on Marriage Equality Tomorrow
March 10, 2011 by Christine Sloane, Regional Field Organizer
Here in Maryland, we will likely see history made tomorrow when SB 116, the Civil Marriage Protection Act, comes up for a full floor vote. You can help make sure that happens by clicking here.
I am so proud to be working with Equality Maryland and an incredible corps of volunteers in Anne Arundel County who’ve spent day after day and night after night calling residents in key legislative districts and generating support for this bill. This past weekend, we hit the door in the cities of Deale and Glen Burnie and made sure that Delegates Bob Costa and Nic Kipke heard voices from their communities. Letter after letter and call after call, constituents showed their Delegates that this issue is not one of arbitrary numbers.
It’s not an issue that can be used for political football. This issue is about real lives, real people and thousands of loving, committed couples across Maryland who will be denied the essential protections that are afforded with civil marriage should this legislation fail. One constituent, named Mark, whose door I knocked on in Glen Burnie, Maryland, wrote a powerful letter to Delegate Nic Kipke that read, “…now that Maryland acknowledges same sex marriages from other states, my partner and I could find ourselves living next door to a couple who has more rights than we do. We were born and raised in Maryland and we’ve paid taxes here our entire lives. [It isn’t right that] some gay couples in Maryland have these protections [and we do not].” Mark and his partner have been together for over twelve years and have spent thousands of dollars to draft living wills to grant each other power of attorney and protect their property should one of them pass away.
No citizen in Maryland should feel that he or she is of lesser value than any other or have to jump through hoops to secure equal rights. For weeks, core volunteers have held phonebank after phonebank to make sure that Delegates are hearing this message. When I head out to the State Capitol in Annapolis tomorrow morning to hopefully witness the final vote, I will rest assured knowing that we here on the ground have done the work. I know that the support for SB 116 is there and that, thanks to the hard work of incredibly dedicated volunteers, the Maryland legislature has heard the call for full marriage equality. I know that Delegates have heard from same-sex and opposite-sex couples, gay and straight mothers, fathers, sisters and friends who know that this issue is about one of the fundamental building blocks of our society: family. In the last 10 days alone, just in Anne Arundel County, we’ve made over 3,000 calls into the community and Delegates here have received literally hundreds of messages of support.
We’ve worked with Equality Maryland all over the state and literally thousands of supporters have charged their Delegates to support equality. I know we’ve made an impact. I will be waiting, with thousands of others, with the hope that Maryland stays on the right side of history. If you live in Maryland, please take action now by clicking here.