Hawaii gov. calls special session on gay marriage
HONOLULU — Hawaii Gov. Neil Abercrombie on Monday called for a special legislative session to move forward on a bill that would legalize gay marriage.
If lawmakers pass a bill, Hawaii would join 13 U.S. states and the District of Columbia in allowing gay marriage. The special session is scheduled to begin on Oct. 28.
The bill is the culmination of 20 years of discussion, Abercrombie told reporters during a news conference at the Hawaii Capitol.
"Every variation on a view with regard to the issue of marriage and equitable treatment for those engaged in marriage has been aired, has been analyzed, has been discussed," Abercrombie said. "No one has been left out or has been marginalized in the process to this point."
Abercrombie acknowledged that some people will be against the bill because they disagree with the concept of gay marriage, but he said it includes provisions — including a religious exemption — to protect First Amendment rights.
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