Colorado state Senate approves civil unions; bill’s future uncertain in state House

LGBTQ Nation

DENVER — The Colorado State Senate on Thursday passed the second of two required votes on a bill legalizing civil unions for same-sex couples couples.

The civil unions bill would allow same-sex couples the right to inherit property, apply for family leave and share medical decisions.

“Civil unions will allow same-sex couples to equally participate in the protections and responsibilities available to other families in Colorado,” said the bill’s sponsor, state Sen. Pat Steadman (D-Denver), after the vote.

If the bill became law, it would grant most of the rights, responsibilities and privileges spouses have to any two committed Coloradans. Things like hospital visitation, adoption, property claims in death or dissolution are all covered in the bill.

The bill now moves to the House where its fate is less certain, reports Out Front Colorado. Republicans have a one vote majority in that chamber, therefore controlling which committee hears testimony on that bill.

“I think we gave it the best send off we could,” said Steadman.

The bill was approved by a vote of 23-12, garnering unanimous support from the chamber’s Democrats, and three Republicans.

In 2006, Colorado voters rejected a statewide ballot measure to legalize same-sex marriage.

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