DC Council votes 13-0 12-1 to recognize same-sex marriages

13/13 12/13 D.C. Council members support gay marriage!

The D.C. Council’s final vote on recognizing same-sex marriages performed in other states (first voted on in early April) went remarkably smoothly, passing 13-0… until Ward 8 Councilmember and former “Mayor-for-life” Marion Barry (D) realized what he was voting on. The confused Councilmember, who had pledged to Christian groups that he would vote against recognizing same-sex marriage, then requested a reconsideration of the bill.

The ensuing debate, which City Paper‘s Mike Debonis chronicled, was rather personal since two Councilmembers, David Catania (I—At Large) and Jim Graham (D—Ward 1) are gay. Catania said “[Barry’s] position is bigoted” and Graham said he respects Barry’s civil rights record but “We part ways today on this issue” and that “There is not enough love in this world today.”

While Catania, Graham and their allies couldn’t convince Barry to change his position, the vote ultimately came down to a resounding 12-1 in favor. Not unanimous, true, but still a nice victory for the gay rights movement.

Photo from Flickr user bobster855, used under a Creative Commons license.

6 Comments on “DC Council votes 13-0 12-1 to recognize same-sex marriages

  1. Don’t think so, Will. The marriage part was an amendment to a more mundane bill (the “Disclosure to the United States District Court Amendment Act of 2009″) and was sponsored by Phil Mendelson. I can’t find if the amendment had co-sponsors, but I know Barry was absent at the first vote on the bill.

  2. Will, Barry did originally co-sponsor an early iteration of the bill. He claimed today and has claimed in meetings that his staff acted on his behalf while he was in the hospital.

  3. Pingback: Vox Populi » The Daily Show takes on Marion Barry’s anti-gay marriage vote

  4. Pingback: Vox Populi » Congressmen introduce “D.C. Defense of Marriage” bill

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