Wash. House committee approves gay marriage bill

Jan 30, 2012

OLYMPIA, Wash. — A measure to legalize same-sex marriage has passed a House committee, and the Senate is expected to vote on its companion bill as early as Wednesday.

Sen. Ed Murray, a Seattle Democrat who is sponsoring one of the bills, said Monday that he expects a floor vote on gay marriage in the Senate on Wednesday. A Senate committee voted to approve Murray's bill on Friday. The House Judiciary committee approved its gay marriage bill on Monday on a 7-6 party line vote.

Opponents of same-sex marriage have already promised a referendum battle at the ballot if the Legislature passes the bill and it's signed into law.

Washington state has had a domestic partnership law since 2007, and an "everything but marriage" expansion of the domestic partnership law since 2009.