Vote on Civil Unions tonight – definition of marriage added

The debate on the civil unions bill [bill text] is ongoing right now in the House and a vote is expected later this evening. However, in some surprising (to me) news, an amendment defining marriage was added to the bill and passed in the House by a vote of 80-67. This is the same amendment that was the cause of AG Blumenthal’s letter to Gov. Rell regarding whether this bill would expand the definition of marriage. Now that this amendment has been added to the bill, Gov. Rell is not expected to oppose the passing of the bill itself.

I’m really surprised that this amendment passed and I don’t think it will hold up under Constitutional scrutiny. The California court considered the same issue recently and held that California’s [anti] same-sex law was in violation of the Equal Protection clause. I still haven’t changed my stance that this is not an issue worth debating, yet, given the extensive coverage and the attendance at the public hearings, it is obvious that it is a hot topic issue to many, many people.

Live streaming video of the House debate is available on the web, from CT-N’s website. Click on "Live Stream-1". It certainly is a debate worth watching, if for nothing else but a sociological perspective.