Arrow-right Camera

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
Clear Day 34° Clear
News >  Spokane

Gay marriage law takes effect today

Gregoire certifies Referendum 74

OLYMPIA – Washington took the last step Wednesday in changing its laws to allow same-sex couples to marry.

With about two dozen supporters looking on, Gov. Chris Gregoire and Secretary of State Sam Reed signed documents certifying that Referendum 74 passed in the Nov. 6 election. 

Certifying results one month after the election is usually a pro forma event. The results for the other statewide elections and ballot measures were signed earlier in Gregoire’s office with no fanfare.

But the governor invited supporters of R-74 to her conference room to mark the occasion, and to brag that Washington will be the first to issue marriage licenses among the three states that approved same-sex marriage in the election.

“This is our last step for marriage equality in the great state of Washington,” said Gregoire, who used a different pen for each letter of her name and distributed the pens among the same-sex couples who gathered for the ceremony.

Reed, who signed with a single pen, commended supporters and opponents of the referendum for a civil campaign over a tough issue.

The law takes effect today. King and Thurston counties planned to open their auditor’s offices just after midnight to issue marriage licenses. Spokane County auditor’s office planned to open at the regular time, 8:30 a.m., but stay open late on Friday, until 4 p.m.

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

Local journalism is essential.

Give directly to The Spokesman-Review's Northwest Passages community forums series -- which helps to offset the costs of several reporter and editor positions at the newspaper -- by using the easy options below. Gifts processed in this system are not tax deductible, but are predominately used to help meet the local financial requirements needed to receive national matching-grant funds.

Subscribe to the Coronavirus newsletter

Get the day’s latest Coronavirus news delivered to your inbox by subscribing to our newsletter.


Annual health and dental insurance enrollment period open now

 (Courtesy Washington Healthplanfinder)
Sponsored

2020 has been a stressful year for myriad reasons.