Thu Jan 3, 2013, 04:58 PM
Fearless (15,810 posts)
Gay marriage bill to be introduced (TODAY) into R.I. General Assembly
ROVIDENCE, R.I. -- Legislation allowing gay couples to marry in Rhode Island will be introduced on Thursday, the bill's longtime sponsor, state Rep. Arthur Handy, said Tuesday, the opening day of the 2013 General Assembly session.
A key point of debate will be how the bill addresses concerns from religious groups. Handy has said that the legislation will include, as it has in past versions, language granting religious groups protections, if they object to same sex unions as a matter of their religious beliefs.
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Gay marriage bill to be introduced (TODAY) into R.I. General Assembly (Original post)
Response to Fearless (Original post)
Thu Jan 3, 2013, 05:20 PM
DreamGypsy (2,147 posts)
1. More info on the bill, specifically "language granting religious groups protections"
From a Providence Journal article:
Handy has said that the legislation will include, as it has in past versions, language granting religious groups protections, if they object to same sex unions as a matter of their religious beliefs.
Citing the U.S. Constitution's First Amendment, a 2011 version of Handy's gay marriage bill stated that every religious institution has "exclusive control over its own religious doctrine, policy, and teachings regarding who may marry within their faith, and on what terms."
It declared that "no court or other state or local governmental body, entity, agency or commission shall compel, prevent, or interfere in any way with any religious institution's decisions about marriage eligibility within that particular faith's tradition."
And it stated that "ordained clergy, ministers or elders shall not be obligated or otherwise required by law to officiate at any particular civil marriage or religious rite of marriage."
This link is to a pdf of the full text of the bill.