Same-sex unions in the United States
|Legal recognition of
† Not yet in effect
Same-sex unions in the United States are legally recognized in some states and municipalities in various forms. These are same-sex marriage, civil unions, domestic partnerships, and reciprocal beneficiary relationships. Legally recognized same-sex unions can be formed in nineteen states and the District of Columbia.
- 1 Federal law
- 2 Marriage
- 3 Civil unions
- 4 Domestic partnerships
- 5 Employment benefits
- 6 Same-sex union referenda under consideration
- 7 Same-sex unions under litigation
- 8 See also
- 9 References
The legal issues surrounding same-sex marriage in the United States are complicated by the nation's federal system of government. Traditionally, the federal government does not attempt to establish its own definition of marriage. Instead, any marriage recognized by a state was recognized by the federal government, even if that marriage was not recognized by one or more other states (as was the case with interracial marriage before 1967 due to anti-miscegenation laws). According to the federal General Accounting Office (GAO), more than 1,138 rights and protections are conferred to U.S. citizens upon marriage by the federal government; areas affected include Social Security benefits, veterans' benefits, health insurance, Medicaid, hospital visitation, estate taxes, retirement savings, pensions, family leave, and immigration law.
The federal Defense of Marriage Act in 1996, prompted by fears of an adverse result in Hawaii's lawsuit Baehr v. Miike, defined a marriage explicitly as a union of one man and one woman for the purposes of all federal laws (See 1 U.S.C. § 7), which was ultimately ruled unconstitutional by the Supreme Court in United States v. Windsor on June 26, 2013. Other legal cases based on the same point of law had been 'on hold' until the Supreme Court ruled on Windsor. As a result, shortly after Windsor was decided, a number of federal areas ranging from veteran benefits to immigration were clarified as applying equally to same-sex couples.
Windsor only affects federal law. Individual states were unaffected by the case, and remain free as before to define marriage as they see fit, subject to any legal challenge or constitutional restrictions.
Some aspects of marriage law are still decided by a combination of state and federal law, such as federal marriage benefits (determined by the state where the marriage was issued or the state of current residence), leaving somewhat open the question of how federal benefits would apply in states that do not recognize same-sex marriage.
Same-sex marriage has been legalized in sixteen states and one district—California, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington, and the District of Columbia. The Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) also permits states to refuse to recognize unions "treated as a marriage" under the laws of another state, which many states have done. Same-sex marriages performed in other jurisdictions may be recognized to varying degrees in New Mexico.
On May 15, 2008, the California Supreme Court ruled that domestic partnerships, although granting nearly the same rights as marriage, were not sufficient under the California constitution. As a result, the court struck down Proposition 22 and the parts of the Marriage Act defining marriage as between one man and one woman. The court denied bids to reverse the decision and to stay the decision until after the November 4, 2008, election and clarified that the ruling took effect on June 16, 2008. The California legislature had previously passed legislation legalizing gay marriage, but it was vetoed by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger stating that, depending on how the court ruled in In re Marriage Cases, the law was either unconstitutional or irrelevant. On November 4, 2008, the ruling was annulled when voters passed Proposition 8. In the Strauss v. Horton case, the court upheld Proposition 8, but allowed existing same-sex marriages to stand (under the Grandfather clause principle). As a result, all out-of-state same-sex marriages are given the benefits of marriage under California law, although only those performed before November 5, 2008 are granted the designation "marriage". United States district court Judge Vaughn Walker overturned Proposition 8 on August 4, 2010 in the case Perry v. Schwarzenegger. Judge Walker issued an injunction against enforcing Proposition 8 and a stay to determine suspension of his ruling pending appeal. Walker lifted the stay on August 12, 2010, thus allowing same-sex marriages to be performed as of August 18, 2010 On August 16, 2010, the Ninth Circuit granted the motion to stay, ordered expedited briefing on the merits of the appeal, and directed the parties to brief the issue of why the appeal should not be dismissed for lack of standing. On August 17, 2010, the same Ninth Circuit panel ordered expedited briefing on the Imperial County appeal. The court also ordered both appeals calendared for oral argument during the week of December 6, 2010, in San Francisco. It was upheld by the Ninth Circuit on February 7, 2012. The case, then known as Perry v. Brown, was appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court on July 31, 2012. The Supreme Court granted review of the case, renamed Hollingsworth v. Perry, on December 7, 2012 and issued a final decision on June 26, 2013. The Supreme Court vacated the judgment of the Ninth Circuit and the case was remanded with instructions to dismiss the appeal for lack of jurisdiction. The Ninth Circuit dismissed the appeal on June 28, 2013 and released their stay on the matter, with same-sex marriages resuming almost immediately in California.
In March 2012, Governor Markell said he thought that the legalization of same-sex marriage in Delaware was "inevitable" and would be passed "probably within the next few years". In April 2013, the Delaware House of Representatives passed a same-sex marriage bill. On May 7, 2013, the Senate passed the bill, after which Governor Markell immediately signed it. The legislation took effect on July 1, 2013.
District of Columbia
Same-sex marriage in the District was legalized on March 3, 2010.
In 2011, the Hawaii state legislature passed a bill recognizing civil unions. Governor Neil Abercrombie signed the bill on February 24, 2011. The law took effect on January 1, 2012. In January 2013, a bill was introduced in the Hawaii State Legislature that would legalize same-sex marriage. Despite the support of Governor Abercrombie and the Hawaii Congressional delegation, the Legislature adjourned without voting on the legislation. Following the U.S. Supreme Court rulings in United States v. Windsor and Hollingsworth v. Perry, lawmakers considered a special session for the bill. In September, Governor Abercrombie called the Hawaii State Legislature into special session on October 28 to consider the same-sex marriage bill. On October 30, the Hawaii senate passed the bill by a vote of 20-4. On November 8, the Hawaii house passed an amended version of the bill by a vote of 30-19, sending it back to the senate. The senate passed the bill 19-4 on November 12. Governor Abercrombie signed it on November 13.
Openly gay representative Greg Harris introduced a bill to legalize civil unions for both same- and opposite-sex couples. On March 21, 2007, the House Human Services Committee recommended the bill to be voted on by the full House by a 5–4 margin. On November 30, 2010, the House voted to approve the bill, and on December 1, 2010, the Senate did as well. The bill was signed by Governor Pat Quinn on January 31, 2011, and the law took effect on June 1, 2011. In February 2013, the Illinois Senate approved a bill legalizing same-sex marriage. The bill failed to come up for a vote in the Illinois house before the end of the spring session. On November 5, 2013, the Illinois House passed by 61-54 an amended version of the bill, having it take effect on June 1, 2014 instead of January 1, 2014. The Illinois Senate concurred an hour later by a vote of 32-21. Governor Pat Quinn signed the bill on November 20, 2013.
In a unanimous decision released April 3, 2009, the Iowa Supreme Court ruled that the statute prohibiting same-sex marriage violated the equal protection clause of the state constitution. The court ruling took effect April 29, 2009.
A same-sex marriage bill passed the Maine legislature and was signed by the governor on May 6, 2009. The law was subsequently repealed by voters on November 3, 2009. However, a separate voter initiative allowing same-sex marriage in Maine passed on November 6, 2012.
The Civil Marriage Protection Act was signed by Governor Martin O'Malley on March 1, 2012, providing that same-sex couples can obtain a civil marriage license and that religious institutions will be protected from performing any marriage in violation of their doctrine. Opponents of the law obtained enough signatures in a referendum petition to place the law on the ballot for approval or rejection by the voters. On November 6, 2012, voters upheld the law by approving ballot Question 6, becoming one of the first U.S. states, alongside Maine and Washington, to legalize same-sex marriage through popular vote. The law became effective on January 1, 2013.
|State||Legalization date||Effective date||Method|
|1||Massachusetts||November 18, 2003||May 17, 2004||Court|
|2||California||May 15, 2008||June 16, 2008||Court|
|2||California||August 4, 2010||June 28, 2013||Court|
|3||Connecticut||October 10, 2008||November 12, 2008||Court|
|4||Iowa||April 3, 2009||April 27, 2009||Court|
|5||Vermont||April 7, 2009||September 1, 2009||Legislature|
|6||New Hampshire||June 3, 2009||January 1, 2010||Legislature|
|7||New York||June 24, 2011||July 24, 2011||Legislature|
|8||Washington||November 6, 2012||December 6, 2012||Legislature & voters|
|9||Maine||November 6, 2012||December 29, 2012||Voters|
|10||Maryland||November 6, 2012||January 1, 2013||Legislature & voters|
|11||Rhode Island||May 2, 2013||August 1, 2013||Legislature|
|12||Delaware||May 7, 2013||July 1, 2013||Legislature|
|13||Minnesota||May 14, 2013||August 1, 2013||Legislature|
|14||New Jersey||September 27, 2013||October 21, 2013||Court|
|15||Hawaii||November 13, 2013||December 2, 2013||Legislature|
|16||Illinois||November 20, 2013||June 1, 2014||Legislature|
The first state to legalize same-sex marriage was Massachusetts. In 2003 the Massachusetts Supreme Court ruled in favor of same-sex couples seeking marriage in a 4–3 decision. It required the legislature grant same-sex couples the rights afforded to married couples. In a separate opinion, the court rejected attempts to opt for civil unions instead, insisting that same-sex marriage was the only appropriate remedy. The ruling took effect on May 17, 2004. The 1913 law was repealed on July 31, 2008 (which bypassed the standard 90-day waiting period and made the law effective immediately). It had prevented out-of-state same-sex couples from getting married in Massachusetts if the marriage was unrecognized or illegal in their home state (originally it had prevented out-of-state interracial couples from getting married in Massachusetts for the same reason). An attempt to reintroduce the 1913 law failed in August 2008.
On May 9, 2013, the Minnesota House of Representatives passed a bill to legalize same-sex marriage on a vote of 75 to 59. On May 13, 2013, the Minnesota Senate passed the bill on a vote of 37-30. Governor Mark Dayton signed the bill into law on May 14. It went into effect August 1, 2013.
A same-sex marriage bill was signed into law by Governor Lynch on June 3, 2009. It became effective on January 1, 2010.
After a ruling by the New Jersey Supreme Court, the state provided civil unions. The ruling, similar to the ruling in Vermont, required the state grant all the benefits given to opposite-sex couples to same-sex couples. Prior to the ruling, same-sex couples enjoyed a broad range of benefits under the state's domestic partnership law. The Civil Union Act took effect on February 19, 2007. On February 16, 2012, the New Jersey Legislature passed a measure providing for same-sex marriage, but Governor Chris Christie returned the bill with an amendatory veto, the amendment being that the bill would be presented to the voters as a referendum. After the United States v. Windsor decision, the legislature considered overriding Chris Christie's veto and a lawsuit challenging the current civil union law was filed. On September 27, 2013, New Jersey Superior Court Judge Mary Jacobson, in Garden State Equality v. Dow, ruled that the state must allow same-sex couples to marry by October 21. Governor Christie appealed the ruling and requested a stay, but on October 18 the New Jersey Supreme Court denied the stay. On October 21, the governor dropped the appeal.
After a 2006 New York Court of Appeals decision in which the Court upheld the constitutionality of New York State's opposite-sex definition of marriage, New York gay rights groups vowed to push for same-sex marriage in the legislature. During his 2006 gubernatorial campaign, Eliot Spitzer said that he would push to legalize same-sex marriage if elected, and Spitzer proposed a same-sex marriage bill to the state legislature as governor on April 27, 2007. This legislation passed the New York State Assembly on June 19, 2007, but died in the Republican-controlled New York State Senate and was returned to the Assembly. Same-sex marriage in New York was legalized on June 24, 2011.
On May 14, 2012, Governor Lincoln Chafee signed an executive order recognizing out-of-state same-sex marriages.
In 2013, the General Assembly passed a bill legalizing same-sex marriage and Governor Chafee signed it on May 2, 2013. It will take effect on August 1, 2013.
A same-sex marriage bill passed the Vermont legislature on April 2, 2009, but Governor Jim Douglas vetoed the bill on April 6. However, on April 7, both houses of the legislature voted to override the governor's veto, making Vermont the first state in the U.S. to legalize same-sex marriage through legislative means. The law has been effective since September 1, 2009.
On February 13, 2012, Governor Chris Gregoire signed a same-sex marriage bill that had previously been passed by both houses of the state legislature. The law was meant to take effect 90 days after signing, but opponents were able to interrupt its implementation by collecting enough signatures to put it on the next ballot as Referendum 74. Voters approved the referendum on the November 6, 2012, by a 54-46% margin. The law took effect on December 6, and the first marriages were celebrated on December 9, 2012.
Civil unions are a means of establishing kinship in a manner similar to that of marriage. The formalities for entering a civil union and the benefits and responsibilities of the parties tend to be similar or identical to those relating to marriage. Various names are used for similar relationships in other countries, but civil union was first applied in Vermont.
Some in the gay community do not see civil unions as a replacement for marriage. "Marriage in the United States is a civil union; but a civil union, as it has come to be called, is not marriage," said Evan Wolfson of Freedom to Marry. "It is a proposed hypothetical legal mechanism, since it doesn’t exist in most places, to give some of the protections but also withhold something precious from gay people. There’s no good reason to do that." However, some opponents of same-sex marriage view the matter differently. Randy Thomasson, Executive Director of the Campaign for California Families, calls civil unions "homosexual marriage by another name" and contends that civil unions provide same-sex couples "all the rights of marriage available under state law".
After the invalidating of Section 3 of DOMA by the Supreme Court, Civil Unions continue to only provide state-law benefits and not federal benefits.
Governor John Hickenlooper signed a bill to establish civil unions for same-sex and opposite-sex couples on March 21, 2013. The law took effect on May 1, 2013.
Domestic partnerships are any of a variety of relationships recognized by employers or state or local government. The benefits of domestic relationships range from very limited rights to all the rights afforded to married people by the state, except where federal law makes providing benefits impossible. While most domestic partnership schemes grant those partners limited, enumerated rights, the California, Oregon, Washington, and Nevada schemes provide substantially the same rights as marriage and are therefore, essentially, civil unions.
Government domestic partnership registries
- For a full list of cities and counties see the following page: Cities and counties in the United States offering a domestic partnership registry
Some U.S. cities, including New York, San Francisco, and Toledo, offer domestic partnership registries. These registries afford registered partner specified rights otherwise reserved to married couples. The rights afforded include access to city services and rights created by city ordinances. Some private employers within such cities use the domestic partnership registries for the purpose of determining employee eligibility for domestic partner benefits.
Six U.S. states and the District of Columbia have some form of domestic partnership. One of these, Hawaii, calls its scheme a "reciprocal beneficiary" registry. Domestic partnership benefits vary widely, ranging from enumerated lists of benefits similar to municipal domestic partnerships to benefits equal to marriage.
When state governments legalize same-sex unions in some form, municipalities and counties in these states may sometimes choose to sunset their own domestic partnership registries (as Cook County, Illinois did in May 2011), while others which enacted such local registries prior to the state's own registry may retain their registries for various reasons. Such registries continue to be separate from state-level registries and unions, and usually must be filed after the dissolution of a state-level union.
States offering domestic partnerships
A California domestic partnership is available to same-sex couples and to certain opposite-sex couples in which at least one party is at least 62 years of age. When it became law on September 22, 1999 the domestic partnership registry entitled partners to very few privileges such as hospital visitation rights. The legislature has since expanded the scope of California domestic partnerships to afford essentially the same rights and responsibilities common to marriage. As such, it is now difficult to distinguish California domestic partnerships from civil unions offered in a handful of other states.
Beginning July 1, 2009, unmarried couples have been able to enter a designated beneficiary agreement which will grant them limited rights, including making funeral arrangements for each other, receiving death benefits and inheriting property without a will.
A bill establishing civil unions was enacted on March 21, 2013 and is due to take effect on May 1, 2013. The civil union law does not affect designated beneficiary agreements.
District of Columbia
The Washington, DC, domestic partnership law took effect on June 11, 1992, but was not funded by Congress until 2002. Both heterosexual and homosexual couples may register, and while benefits have increased over time, the benefits are specifically enumerated and are as extensive as those of marriage. There is also full, legal marriage for same sex couples since March 2010, when a bill to allow it took effect after the required 30-day review of congress expired.
Under Hawaii's reciprocal beneficiary law, any two adults barred from marrying may enjoy a very limited number of benefits granted to married couples. It has been in place since 1997, when Hawaii voters approved a constitutional amendment granting the legislature power to reserve marriage to opposite-sex couples in response to a trial court decision in favor of same-sex marriage. The legislature then approved the law in place of same-sex marriage.
Maine instituted domestic partnerships in an act that took effect on July 30, 2004. Under the law, same-sex couples are entitled to many of the state's benefits of marriage.
On July 1, 2008, domestic partnerships became available in the state of Maryland. The new laws gave 11 marriage rights to domestic partners and added domestic partners to the list of family members that a person can add and remove from a deed to residential property without paying recordation and transfer taxes.
Since October 1, 2009, same-sex couples and opposite-sex couples over 18 have been able to enter into domestic partnerships.
The New Jersey domestic partnership statute provides "limited healthcare, inheritance, property rights and other rights and obligations" but "[does] not approach the broad array of rights and obligations afforded to married couples." When domestic partnerships were initially available, beginning July 10, 2004, to same-sex couples and to opposite-sex couples. Since the inception of civil unions in New Jersey, they are available to same- and opposite-sex couples aged 62 and older. Couples in a domestic partnership prior to the Civil Union Act, however, were not required to enter a civil union.
In 2004, voters approved a state constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage. Despite this defeat, gay rights groups have continued to push for civil unions in the state legislature. In trying to garner support for a civil unions bill, it was changed to a domestic partnership registry, although it still gave virtually all of the state level benefits that a marriage or civil union does. In April 2007, the Oregon House passed the domestic partnership bill.
The bill was signed by the Governor on May 9, and made Oregon the ninth state in the United States to give some level of recognition to same-sex couples. Although the law was to take effect on January 1, 2008, it was delayed by court action and took effect on February 4, 2008.
After a 2006 court ruling rejecting same-sex marriage, gay rights groups have vowed to push for same-sex marriage in the long-term and domestic partnerships in the short-term.
In 2007, 2008 and 2009, domestic partnership bills over the years provided more rights, responsibilities and benefits to partners in domestic partnerships when they passed both the Washington state Senate and House. Governor Christine Gregoire signed all three bills into law while in office. An "all but marriage" expansion of the domestic partnership bill was signed by Gregoire on April 17, 2009. The law was approved 53% to 47% by Washington citizens in Referendum 71. Washington is the first U.S. state to approve a gay rights measure in a statewide vote.
The Wisconsin legislature passed its 2009–2010 Budget on June 26, 2009. Governor Jim Doyle included language in the bill to allow for domestic partnership registrations for all unmarried persons. Wisconsin is the first state to offer such domestic partnership benefits despite having a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage and comparable alternatives, like civil unions. A legal analysis found on May 15, 2009, that adding such language to the budget despite the bans was likely legal, and the state Supreme Court refused to hear an appeal to a lower court ruling affirming the law. The law became effective on August 3, 2009.
Even in states where official recognition of their relationships is lacking; LGBT partners can conclude cohabitation agreements. Many states recognize through their judicial systems cohabitation agreements and common law partner agreements concluded between two partners in a relationship.These are de facto domestic partnerships that protect both parties and allow for shared property and court recognition of their relationships.
Some public- and private-sector U.S. employers provide health insurance or other spousal benefits to same-sex partners of employees, although the employee receiving benefits for his or her partner may have to pay income tax on the value of the benefit.
Partner benefits are more common among large employers, colleges and universities than at small businesses. The qualifications for and benefits of domestic partnership status vary from employer to employer; some recognize only same-sex or different-sex couples, while others recognize both.
According to data from the Human Rights Campaign Foundation, the majority of Fortune 500 companies provided benefits to same-sex partners of employees as of June 2006. Overall, 41 percent of HR professionals indicate that their organizations offered some form of domestic partner benefits (opposite-sex partners, same-sex partners or both).
Because the U.S. federal government does not recognize same- or opposite-sex partners, tax benefits provided to opposite-sex spouses are generally not available to same-sex partners and spouses or opposite-sex partners. While there are certain exceptions, generally under the Internal Revenue Code Section 152, the imputed value of the benefit will be considered taxable income. The proposed Tax Equity for Domestic Partner and Health Plan Beneficiaries Act would remove the disparity in tax treatment between such partners and married people, who are not taxed on benefits.
Same-sex union referenda under consideration
Referenda to repeal same-sex union bans are being considered in the following states:
On May 17, 2013, Equal Marriage Arizona filed an initiative to put an amendment on the 2014 election ballot which would replace the current marriage definition with a gender-neutral definition. 259,213 valid signatures are needed by July 3, 2014, to put the issue on the 2014 ballot.
Two ballot proposals have been approved for signature collections. One ballot proposal by Arkansans for Equality would repeal Amendment 83, but not legalize same-sex marriage; it would leave the statute ban in place. The other ballot proposal by Arkansas Initiative for Marriage Equality would legalize same-sex marriage in the state.
In 2013, the state legislature began work on legislation that repeals the constitutional ban and substituting a gender neutral definition of marriage. The Senate approved the legislation on April 22 on a 12–9 vote. and the Assembly passed the resolution on May 23 by a 27-14 vote. It requires approval by the 2015 legislature and by voters in the 2016 election to take effect.
Basic Rights Oregon plans to put a repeal of the state's constitutional ban on the 2014 ballot. On July 26, 2013, the petition campaign to get the required signatures was launched.
Same-sex unions under litigation
The county clerk of Doña Anna County began issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples, on his own initiative, on August 21, 2013. Soon after, other counties began issuing marriage licenses under court order. Eight counties now offer same-sex marriage. On August 29, 2013, all 33 of New Mexico's county clerks asked the New Mexico Supreme Court for a ruling on the legality of same-sex marriage in the state. The New Mexico Supreme Court heard the case on October 23.
- Civil union in the United States
- Domestic partnership in the United States
- Same-sex marriage in the United States
- LGBT rights in the United States
- The issue nationwide is at a tipping point illinoisissues.uis.edu. Retrieved May 27, 2012.
- Belenky, Alexander (July 2, 2011). "Rhode Island Same Sex Civil Unions Bill Signed By Governor Lincoln Chafee". The Huffington Post. Retrieved July 2, 2011.
- "Text of the decision in In re Marriage Cases". Supreme Court of California. May 15, 2008. Archived from the original on June 3, 2008. Retrieved June 5, 2008.
- "In re Marriage Cases, footnote 17, pages 29–30". Supreme Court of California. May 15, 2008. Archived from the original on June 3, 2008. Retrieved June 5, 2008.
- http://www.courtinfo.ca.gov/opinions/archive/S168047.PDF – For a review see: Thomas Kupka, Names and Designations in Law, in: The Journal Jurisprudence 6 (2010) 121–130.
- "Ruling by United States District Court". The San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved August 4, 2010.
- Egelko, Bob; Bulwa, Demian (August 4, 2010). "Judge strikes down ban on same-sex marriage". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved August 4, 2010.
- Keys, Matthew (August 4, 2010). "Federal Judge: Same Sex Marriage Ban Under Proposition 8 Violates Constitution". FOX40.com. Retrieved August 4, 2010.
- McKinley, Jesse (August 12, 2010). "Judge Sets End to Ban on Gay Marriage in California". New York Times. Retrieved August 12, 2010.
- Joel Rosenblatt and Edvard Pettersson (August 16, 2010). "California Gay Marriage Remains Banned During Appeal". Bloomberg Businessweek. Retrieved August 16, 2010.
- Ninth Circuit: "Order," August 16, 2010. Retrieved August 16, 2010
- Ninth Circuit: "Order," August 17, 2010. Retrieved August 17, 2010
- "U.S. Supreme Court Asked to Hear Prop. 8 Case". American Foundation for Equal Rights. Retrieved July 31, 2012.
- "Justices to Hear Two Challenges on Gay Marriage". New York Times. December 7, 2012. Retrieved December 8, 2012. (archived at http://www.webcitation.org/6ClunjOCb)
- "Same-sex marriages resume in California". USA Today. Retrieved June 28, 2013.
- "Delaware governor says gay marriage is "inevitable" in his state". Reuters. March 2, 2012. Retrieved 16 December 2012.
- "Governor Urges Lawmakers to Hear Marriage Equality Bills". Maui Now. February 11, 2013.
- "Gov. Abercrombie Calls Special Session on Marriage Equity". Governor of Hawaii. September 9, 2013.
- "Hawaii Legislature Passes Marriage Equality". Think Progress. November 9, 2013. Retrieved November 9, 2013.
- "Illinois Gay Marriage Bill Passes As State Poised To Become 15th To Legalize Same Sex Marriage". Huffington Post. November 5, 2013. Retrieved November 5, 2013.
- "Iowa Supreme Court upholds Hanson's ruling; marriage no longer limited to one man, one woman". Des Moines Register. April 3, 2009. Retrieved April 3, 2009.
- Susan M. Cover (November 4, 2009). "Mainers vote down gay marriage law". Portland Press Herald. Retrieved November 4, 2009. "The measure is repealed in a close vote, 53–47 percent"[dead link]
- "2012 General Election Ballot Question Language". elections.state.md.us. Maryland State Board of Elections. Retrieved August 20, 2012.
- Press, Associated. "Maine, Maryland Vote to Legalize Gay Marriage". Swampland.time.com. Retrieved November 7, 2012.
- Writer, Staff. (August 1, 2008) Governor signs law allowing out of state gays to marry in Massachusetts. PinkNews.co.uk.
- Writer, Staff. (July 16, 2008) Massachusetts moves to allow out of state gays to get married. PinkNews.co.uk.
- Anti-gay group attacks same-sex marriage in Massachusetts. PinkNews.co.uk (August 18, 2008).
- Zernike, Kate (February 17, 2012). "Christie, as Promised, Vetoes Bill to Legalize Gay Marriage". New York Times.
- Wiener, Rachel. "New Jersey: The next battleground for gay marriage". Washington Post. Retrieved June 28, 2013.
- "Court: Same-sex marriages can start Monday in New Jersey". CNN. Retrieved October 18, 2013.
- Hakim, Danny (October 6, 2006). "Spitzer Vows to Push for Gay Marriage". The New York Times. Retrieved May 29, 2008.
- "Assembly Bill 8590".
- MacDougall, Ian (June 29, 2011). "RI Senate passes civil unions bill". Greenwich Time. Associated Press. Retrieved June 30, 2011.
- Niedowski, Erika (May 14, 2012). "Lincoln Chafee, Rhode Island Governor, Declares State Will Recognize Out-Of-State Gay Marriages". The Huffington Post. Archived from the original on May 15, 2012. Retrieved May 14, 2012.
- "Chafee signs same-sex marriage bills, making Rhode Island the 10th state to legalize gay marriage". May 2, 2013.
- Gram, Dave (April 6, 2009). "Vermont Gov. Douglas vetoes gay marriage bill". Boston Globe. Retrieved April 7, 2009.[dead link]
- Gram, Dave (April 7, 2009). "Vermont legalizes gay marriage with veto override". Associated Press. Retrieved April 7, 2009.
- Interview with Evan Wolfson, David Shankbone, September 30, 2007
- "Bush stance on gay unions irks conservatives".
- "Human Rights Campaign – Defining Domestic Partners for Benefits Purposes". Retrieved March 6, 2008.
- "Text of the decision in In re Marriage Cases". Supreme Court of California accessdate=2008-06-05. May 15, 2008.
- "Ritter signs bill that will help gay couples". The Denver Post. Associated Press. April 9, 2009. Retrieved April 10, 2009.
- House overrides governor's veto of domestic partners bill[dead link]
- Rabner, Stuart (February 17, 2007). 16, 2007.pdf "Formal Opinion". Attorney General (New Jersey). Retrieved July 24, 2007.
- "Civil Unions for Same-sex Couples in New Jersey". lambdalegal.org (Lambda Legal). 2007. Retrieved July 31, 2007.
- "HB 2007" (PDF). Retrieved May 29, 2008.
- Memo says Wisconsin domestic partnership plan likely legal. Madison.com (October 8, 2012).
- "Wisconsin Supreme Court Rejects Case Seeking to Strip Away Domestic Partnership Protections" (press release), Fair Wisconsin, November 4, 2009.
- "Prenups aren't just for married couples anymore". CNN. November 2, 2004. Retrieved 2012-03-30.
- Human Rights Campaign Foundation – State of the Workplace for Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Americans, 2005–2006. Hrc.org.
- "Human Rights Campaign – GLBT Equality at the Fortune 500". Retrieved March 9, 2008.
- "Employees Undervalue Benefits, SHRM 2007 Survey Finds". Retrieved March 9, 2008.
- Human Rights Campaign – What the Defense of Marriage Act Does. Hrc.org.
- "Initiative seeks to legalize gay marriage in Arizona". Arizona Daily Star. May 18, 2013.
- Equal Marriage Arizona
- "AG Accepts Ballot Title Proposal to Repeal Amendment Banning Same-sex Marriage". Arkansasmatters.com. September 19, 2013. Retrieved November 7, 2013.
- "Ark. AG McDaniel Certifies Ballot Proposal for Same-sex Marriage". Arkansasmatters.com. November 7, 2013. Retrieved November 7, 2013.
- "Equality Florida, Freedom to Marry launch 'Get Engaged' effort to repeal state's gay-marriage ban". The Miami Herald. June 19, 2013.
- "Brito files to begin statewide petition drive, hoping to end Florida's gay-marriage ban in 2014". The Miami Herald. June 21, 2013.
- Senate Joint Resolution 13
- "Nev. senate panel amends, passes gay marriage bill". Reno Gazette-Journal. April 11, 2013.
- Chereb, Sandra (April 22, 2013). "Gay marriage resolution advances in Nevada". Reno Gazette-Journal. Retrieved April 23, 2013.
- "Nevada Assembly backs resolution to end ban on gay marriage". Las Vegas Sun. May 23, 2013.
- Hagar, Ray (April 28, 2013). "Long road ahead for marriage equality in Nevada". Reno Gazette-Journal. Retrieved May 24, 2013.
- "Ohio could get a chance to approve same-sex marriage". Cleveland.com. Retrieved June 28, 2013.