The state of Connecticut has allowed civil unions since October 2005, and it was the first state to implement them by legislative action rather than a judicial ruling. In April of this year it became the second state (after California) to legislatively pass a full marriage equality bill in committee.

Republican Governor Jodi Rell, who signed civil unions into law, opposes the bill for marriage, saying it’s unnecessary (citing CUs provide all the same rights and responsibilities of marriage within Connecticut).  Supporters of the equality bill withdrew it because there currently isn’t enough support to pass it in a floor vote.

Of course, the faux “pro-family” crowd at the Family Institute of Connecticut, headed up by Brian Brown, has taken this as a victory and it is now ratcheting up a marriage amendment effort through the constitutional convention mechanism (the state’s last ConCon was in 1965). If convened, the delegates — appointed by the legislature — can consider the measure and decide whether to place it on the ballot. (365gay):

Brian Brown, the executive director of the Family Institute of Connecticut, told a rally this week at the Capitol that he hopes to have a proposed amendment placed before a constitutional convention next year.

…A proposed amendment could be “fast racked” if it is filed by a member of the legislature and voted on by both houses and then put on the ballot.  But Brown said he did not think a proposal to ban same-sex marriage would be approved in the legislature.

Brown told the rally that a constitutional convention was the best course.

“This really is the only likely way to get a constitutional amendment defining marriage and halt our courts,” Brown said. “We need to now start preparing.”

A poll conducted last month  by the Center for Survey Research and Analysis at the University of Connecticut (for The Hartford Courant) found that 49% of Connecticut residents support marriage equality, with 46% opposing it.

Pam Spaulding

Pam Spaulding