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Resolution seeks to repeal Nevada’s ban on same-sex marriage

Monday, March 18, 2013
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CARSON CITY, Nev. — A resolution to repeal a section of the Nevada Constitution defining marriage as between and man and a woman, paving the way to legalize same-sex marriage, has been introduced in the Nevada Senate.

SJR13 was introduced Monday by Democratic Sen. Tick Segerblom of Las Vegas.

Same-sex marriage in Nevada was banned in 2002 when voters passed Question 2, the “Protection of Marriage Act,” with 66.9 percent of voters in favor.

Now, more than ten years later, polls show sentiment in Nevada for same sex marriage has changed, with many voters supporting it. A February 2013 poll by the Retail Association of Nevada poll found that 54 percent of voters support marriage equality for gay couples.

In 2009, the Nevada state legislature passed a bill to create a domestic partnership registry to allow same-sex couples many of the same rights as married, heterosexual couples. The law took effect on October 1, 2009.

Last year, a federal judge in Nevada rejected a lawsuit brought by Lambda Legal on behalf of eight gay couples challenging the state’s constitutional ban on same-sex marriage. Chief Judge Robert C. Jones, of the U.S. District Court in Nevada, said the ban does not discriminate against gays because, “like heterosexual persons, they may not marry members of the same sex.”

The resolution introduced Monday would have to be approved by lawmakers this year and again in 2015 before going to voters in 2016 for ratification.

If the provision is repealed, lawmakers could then legalize same-sex marriage through statute in 2017.

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