Hawaii lawmakers kill civil unions bill

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The earliest legal battles over marriage for same-sex couples took place in Hawaii. Now gay activists are readying for another legal battle, this one prompted by the Legislature’s refusal to pass a civil unions bill.

 

The Hawaii House had approved the bill last year. Then, in late January, the Hawaii Senate approved the measure and sent it back to the House for a conforming vote. But House members instead killed the measure.

Lambda Legal and the American Civil Liberties Union of Hawaii Foundation plan to sue the state.

“Because the Legislature has ducked its responsibility multiple sessions in a row, we have no choice now but to bring our clients’ legal claims to court,” said Jennifer C. Pizer of Lambda Legal.

Said Lois Perrin of the ACLU of Hawaii: “It’s shameful that Hawaii again validates discrimination.”

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