Great news from Annapolis today. The Baltimore Sun reports:
Standing with House and Senate supporters, Gov. Martin O'Malley announced this afternoon that he will lead the charge for gay marriage in Maryland and put his name on a bill that allows same-sex couples to wed.This is very good news on a number of fronts:
"Marylanders of all walks of life want their children to live in a loving, stable, committed home protected under the law," O'Malley said. He said it would be one of "a small handful" of legislative priorities.
. . .
O'Malley tasked his top lobbyist, Joseph C. Bryce, with spearheading the effort to move the bill in 2012. Bryce, a well respected Annapolis aide, will coordinate the new Marylanders for Marriage Equality coalition and develop a strategy to garner additional votes.
The Governor taking a leadership role and making this one of his priorities should be a major boost to passing the bill. As I think everyone learned from the slots battle, Gov. O'Malley can be extremely effective at getting his priorities through the General Assembly. His leadership and the very fact of it will carry real weight in the House and the Senate.
Joe Bryce is one of the most experienced people in Annapolis. Having him designated by the governor to coordinate the coalition is an enormous boost for the effort to pass marriage equality. I also view it as a real sign of the Governor's genuine commitment.
In short, today was a very big day for supporters of equality in Maryland. Thanks, Governor.