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Gay Pa. lawmaker says he’ll introduce same-sex marriage bill

Asks chamber to reprimand colleague for preventing floor remarks on Supreme Court's marriage rulings
Thursday, June 27, 2013
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HARRISBURG, Pa. — A gay Pennsylvania legislator says he’ll introduce a bill to legalize same-sex marriages in his home state.

Brian Sims

Rep. Brian Sims (D-Philadelphia) said Thursday that this week’s U.S. Supreme Court ruling in favor of gay marriage shows that it’s time Pennsylvania joined the 12 states that allow gay marriage, including neighbors New York, Delaware and Maryland.

The Philadelphia Democrat says there’s no reason that gay couples shouldn’t enjoy the same rights and benefits as other married couples.

At the close of session Thursday, Sims asked the Legislature to censure an archconservative colleague who prevented him from making floor remarks after the Supreme Court’s gay marriage ruling.

Sims asked the chamber to reprimand Rep. Daryl Metcalfe because of an interview Metcalfe gave to explain why he exercised his right to prevent those floor remarks. Metcalfe told WHYY-FM that Sims’ comments would have been “open rebellion against God’s law.”

Members have the right under House rules to veto another’s remarks under “unanimous consent.”

House Speaker Sam Smith told Sims the procedure would be through the Ethics Committee or by seeking a resolution. Sims says he plans to pursue it.

In a post-session interview Thursday, Metcalfe stood by his earlier remarks.

In 2012, Sims became the first openly gay candidate to be elected to the Pennsylvania General Assembly.

Every other state in the northeastern United States allows same-sex marriage except New Jersey, and it allows civil unions.

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