I don't tend to get very politically involved. However, there are some things I feel VERY passionately about on the ballot this year and I feel compelled to share my thoughts.
Hopefully, you plan to vote no on Prop 4 (I posted my arguments against it a few weeks ago) and YES on Referendum 71. By voting yes on Referendum 71, you are voting to uphold the bill expanding the domestic partnership rights that was already voted on, passed and signed into law by Governor Gregiore.
I feel that if two people love each other enough to spend their lives together, they should be afforded the same rights as married couples. People typically assume this will affect only same-sex couples, but I can think of several heterosexual couples who have chosen not to marry, and removing the expanded domestic partnership rights affects them too!
I absolutely feel that same-sex couples should be allowed to legally marry, but we're a ways off from that in the State of Washington. I've already blogged extensively my arguments supporting same-sex marriage, so I won't rehash that here. But I will reiterate the fact that life and love are hard for ALL couples. Why should we intentionally make it harder for some people?
When the expansion of domestic partnership rights passed, I was extremely proud to live in this state. I felt we had reached a new level of tolerance and understanding, and made a huge step toward equality. If Referendum 71 does not pass, it will be a HUGE step backward for the State of Washington.
I have faith that Washington voters will do the right thing and support Referendum 71, We'll still be a step behind Massachusettes (where same-sex marriage has been legal since 2003), Connecticut (legal since 2008), Iowa (legal since April), Vermont (legal since Sept 1), Maine (legal since Sept 14) and New Hampshire (will become legal on January 1), but we'll be continuing to move in the right direction.
Your YES vote on Referendum 71 shows your commitment to tolerance, equality and progression. And it shows your commitment to Washington's families.