NEW YORK – Below is a statement from Evan Wolfson, Founder and Executive Director of Freedom to Marry, urging the Wyoming State Legislature to reject a constitutional amendment that passed the House today that would specify that out-of-state marriages of same-sex couples would not be honored in Wyoming.
“Freedom to Marry calls on the Wyoming legislature to reject this amendment, which would enshrine discrimination in its constitution. Marriage is not defined by those who are excluded from it, but instead by the love and commitment between two people. House Bill 74 would strip away the rights of citizens because of whom they love. Inappropriately titled ‘Validity of Marriages,’ this bill is an ugly attempt to avoid honoring legal marriages performed outside the borders of the 'Equality State.'
“Wyoming has long enjoyed its admirable nickname because of its commitment to equal protection under the law for all. In 1890, Wyoming was the first state to be admitted to the Union that allowed women to vote. Much in the way that ending the exclusion of women from voting did not change the definition of voting, ending the exclusion of loving and committed same-sex couples from marriage does not change the definition of marriage.
"A majority of Americans now believe that same-sex couples should have the freedom to marry. And today, gay and lesbian couples can marry in Massachusetts, Vermont, New Hampshire, Connecticut, Iowa, and the District of Columbia, in addition to 12 countries on four continents. In each of these places, the sky has not fallen, and families have been helped, with no one hurt.”
Freedom to Marry is the campaign to win marriage nationwide. We are pursuing our Roadmap to Victory by working to win the freedom to marry in more states, grow the national majority for marriage, and end federal marriage discrimination. We partner with individuals and organizations across the country to end the exclusion of same-sex couples from marriage and the protections, responsibilities, and commitment that marriage brings.