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Wednesday, March 6, 2024
HB2802: Write Gay Marriage into State Constitution
By News Release @ 1:44 AM :: 1467 Views :: Family

HOUSE REAFFIRMS COMMITMENT TO PROTECTING MARRIAGE EQUALITY

HB2802 HD1 proposes a constitutional amendment to repeal the Legislature's authority to limit marriage to opposite-sex couples.

News Release from House Democratic Caucus, March 5, 2024

Honolulu, Hawaiʻi – The House of Representatives today passed House Bill 2802 HD1 on its third reading, proposing a constitutional amendment to repeal the Legislature's authority to limit marriage to opposite-sex couples.

House Speaker Scott K. Saiki, introducer of the bill stated, "This measure seeks to safeguard marriage equality by removing the Legislature's authority to restrict marriage, allowing the voters of Hawaiʻi to determine the future of marriage rights for our state."

Despite the enactment of the Hawaiʻi Marriage Equality Act in 2013, recent Supreme Court decisions, notably in Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization, have sparked concerns that the Court could reconsider its stance on same-sex marriage, potentially undermining established rights for marriage equality.

House Bill 2802 HD1 seeks to repeal Article I, Section 23, of the Constitution of the State of Hawaiʻi, which grants the Legislature the authority to reserve marriage to opposite-sex couples. The bill poses a ballot question for the 2024 General Election: "Shall the state constitution be amended to repeal the Legislature's authority to reserve marriage to opposite-sex couples?"

Support for the bill was voiced by various organizations, including Hawaiʻi Civil Rights Commission, American Civil Liberties Union of Hawaiʻi, Change 23 Coalition, Hawaiʻi Health & Harm Reduction Center, Rainbow Family 808, Democratic Party of Hawaiʻi, Stonewall Caucus of the Democratic Party of Hawaiʻi, Hawaiʻi State AFL-CIO, and numerous advocates.

"Today, we passed out of the House the first step to removing discriminatory language that should've never been in the constitution in the first place and unfairly excluded the LGBTQ+ community for the past 26 years. Our constitution should reflect inclusivity, embracing the rights of every individual, including the LGBTQ+ community," said Representative Adrian K. Tam, Co-Convenor of the Equality Caucus.

Speaker Saiki affirmed, "The House Majority stands in solidarity with the advocates present today and those who came before us, remaining committed to protecting marriage rights for all."

House Bill 2802 HD1 now crosses over to the Hawaiʻi Senate for consideration. To track the progress of the measure, click here.

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HB2802: Text, Status  

SA: Repeal of Legislature’s authority over same-sex marriages considered

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