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Wisconsin Gov. Discusses Marriage Equality

by Jason St. Amand
National News Editor
Tuesday Nov 26, 2013

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker often avoids discussing marriage equality, but the Republican opened up about the topic to Bloomberg TV's Al Hunt last weekend.

Walker told Hunt about the state's laws and regulations that impact the LGBT community, lauding the non-discrimination protection laws and even suggested the U.S. House should pass the Employment Non-Discrimination Act because there have only been a few problems with the laws in Wisconsin.

Though he emphasized the importance of workplace equality, he did say that there was a "healthy balance" in the state, even though Wisconsin has a ban on same-sex marriage.

"In Wisconsin, we've had anti-discriminatory laws that are very similar to [ENDA] for more than 30 years and they work quite effectively," Walker said. "We're also a state that has a constitutional amendment that defines marriage as one man and one woman."

"So if similar to the Wisconsin bill, the House bill should be something that -- " Hunt said before Walker interrupted.

"Yeah, if it -- I mean, we've not had problems with that," Walker said, before adding, "We've had no problems -- or I should say, limited problems with that. At the same time, we still have a constitutional amendment that defines marriage. There's a healthy balance there."

As Think Progress reports, Wisconsin was the first state to ban discrimination based on sexual orientation employment, housing, education, credit, and all public accommodations. Republican Gov. Lee S. Dreyfus signed the measure into law. Though marriage equality is not recognized, Wisconsin does have a domestic partner registry and provides benefits to same-sex partners of state employees.


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