Marriage Equality Not Coming to Wisconsin Anytime Soon
Same-sex couples hoping to tie the knot in Wisconsin may have to put any wedding plans on hold for awhile, after Gov. Scott Walker (R) made some discouraging comments at a weekend conference in Milwaukee, the Huffington Post reports.
"To change anything in the constitution ... it requires two consecutive sessions of the legislature, and ultimately, a vote of the people," Walker said, adding that Wisconsin voters approved a gay marriage ban to the state constitution in 2006. "I just don't see that as being anything that's going to be addressed anytime soon."
Though Walker is standing firm on the issue, llinois Gov. Pat Quinn (D) recently urged Walker and Wisconsin lawmakers to pass a bill granting marriage rights to same-sex couples during the National Governors Association meeting. Quinn also said he would sign a gay marriage measure that was stalled in state legislator earlier this year.
According to a March article by the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Walker has expressed that gay marriage should be left up to the states, allowing voters to decide on the issue.
"I'm not a lawyer, so I can't really tell you about the legal side of it," Walker told the newspaper. "The State of Wisconsin has a position, and it's based on the vote of the people back in 2006. We affirm that position."
"In general, my preference is that things are left to the states and not dictated by the federal government. And that's across the board," Walker later added.
A May poll found that 46 percent of voters in Wisconsin back gay marriage rights, which is an increase of support since 2006, though still not enough to strike down the marriage ban, the Twin Cities Pioneer Press reports.
Last week, Minnesota bang holding same-sex ceremonies after gay marriage was legalized earlier this year.