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Maryland signs same sex marriage bill

Maryland’s Gov. Martin O’Malley is the eighth in the United States to sign the bill allowing same-sex marriage. The law is scheduled to take effect starting January 2013.

Many are very excited, to the say the least, about this turn of events. USA Today reports O’Malley as stating, “Religious freedom was the very reason for our state’s founding and at the heart of religious freedom is the freedom of individual conscience.” He signed the bill in the presence of a loud and cheering crowd.

The Huffington Post reports that of all the opposition, religious leaders, especially those of the African American community, are the loudest to protest this bill. Conservative opponents and religious leaders are bandying up support to overthrow this bill, and are leaning on the 1/3 Black population in Maryland. As soon as the bill was signed, these leaders started speaking out in their sermons. Opponents will need to collect 56,000 valid voter signatures by November, when it will be possible to attempt to overturn a law passed by legislature.

There are currently many other states going back and forth on this bill. States like New Jersey, had the bill voted in, but it was vetoed by their Gov. Chris Christie. Some states are voting to ban it altogether, while others face repeals. This is certainly an issue that will remain in legislature for years to come.

Maryland joins 7 other states in the passing of this bill: Washington, Iowa, New York, Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, and Connecticut.