Marriage is on the agenda for Rhode Island Senate Committee tonight

The Rhode Island Senate Judiciary Committee will hold its hearing on the marriage bill onight:

Rhode Island’s debate over legalizing gay marriage now moves to the state Senate, seen as the key battleground in the fight to make the state the sixth to extend marriage rights to gay couples.

A Senate committee planned to hear several hours of testimony from both sides Thursday evening on legislation to allow gay marriages. Seats in the committee room filled up hours before the hearing began, and groups on both sides lined Statehouse hallways with signs of protest and support.

The full House could vote on the marriage bill next week. The Governor, Lincoln Chafee, is very supportive. The Senate could be the roadblock:

The Senate is seen as the main obstacle to passage. Democratic Senate President Teresa Paiva Weed opposes it.

“I think it’s really, really close,” said Sen. Rhoda Perry, D-Providence, one of the sponsors of the legislation. “A lot of people are going to be working hard to change people’s minds.

There are pro-marriage rallies planned today at Providence College (a Catholic institution, btw):

Students from Providence College will hold an on-campus rally today at 4:30 p.m., in support of gay marriage.

The Rhode Island Students for Equality (RISE) has organized a series of campus rallies across the state to demonstrate college students’ active support for two gay marriage bills in the state’s House and Senate. Today’s rally will be the second in a series of six occurring throughout Rhode Island.

This week we learned that NOM’s Maggie Gallagher doesn’t think young people should matter in this discussion. It’s only their future she’s trying to screw up.

And, a new ad from the Rhode Island Marriage Coalition says “It’s Time”:

On October 27, 2010, Joe was one of five bloggers who interviewed President Obama. Joe is a DC-based political consultant with over twenty-five years of experience at both the state and federal level. Joe has managed political operations and legislative efforts for both candidates and issues-based organizations. For seven years, he was the Director of State Legislation at Handgun Control, Inc. He served as that organization's first Political Director during the 2000 cycle. Joe is a graduate of the University of Maine School of Law. In addition, he has a Masters in Public Administration from Lehigh University and received his B.A. from the University of New Hampshire. Joe also has a fun dog, Petey, a worthy successor to Boomer, who got Joe through eight years of Bush and Cheney. Joe likes to think he is a world class athlete having finished the 2005 Chicago Marathon in the time of 4:10. He has completed six other marathons as well -- and is still determined to break the four hour mark.

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