Maryland House of Delegates Chairman Sends Marriage Bill Back to Committee

Posted by Yusef Najafi
March 11, 2011 1:36 PM |

UPDATE, Full report: No Maryland Marriage Vote

Maryland House of Delegates Chairman Del. Joseph Vallario stunned supporters and opponents of Senate Bill 116, the Civil Marriage Protection Act, after a three-hour debate during the bill's final reading by sending it back to the House' Judiciary Committee for further debate. 

During the final moments of debate, discussions became religious from both sides of the argument. 

Del. Heather Mizeur, one of the eight openly LGBT people serving in the House, talked about her childhood, and how she knew she wanted to be an elected official, she knew she was a devout Catholic and she knew she was a lesbian. 

"I prayed and I prayed and I prayed that it would go away," she said "Especially the gay part. Make it go away. By the time I was in college… I realized that never once with my conversations with God, did God tell me it was wrong."

"You can't stop us from loving each other," Mizeur said, adding that, "what we're asking for is the ability to protect oru relationships and that commitment to forever.”

Del. Luke Clippinger, who is gay, talked about how Senate Bill 116 protects religious institutions, explaining that he is a Presbyterian and would not be allowed to get married at his church or any Presbyterian church.

"I've heard that somehow I am less than natural," he said, "That I am less than human. That I am less than. I am here to claim today to this House, that I am not less than. I am a child of God... and perfectin my imperfections." 

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