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Taking a stand on same-sex marriage

Former Takoma Park City Council member Heather R. Mizeur, a Democrat running for the House of Delegates, has put her party's leadership on notice that she and other gay and lesbian voters expect full marriage rights.

In a letter published in this week's Washington Blade, Mizeur scolded "some of the state's leading Democrats" for not taking a firm stance on the same-sex marriage issue.

"It seems the Democrats are simply afraid to take a stand on the issue," wrote Mizeur, a candidate in District 20, which includes parts of Takoma Park and Silver Spring. "This represents a cynical political strategy that dramatically underestimates the people of Maryland."

Tim Craig

Last month, a Baltimore Circuit judge ruled that Maryland's ban on same-sex marriage is unconstitutional but stayed her ruling until appellate judges review it.

The Democrat-controlled House last week killed a proposed state constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage.

But several Democratic leaders, including Senate President Mike Miller (Calvert), oppose such unions and worry that Republicans could use the issue against Democrats in this fall's elections.

Mizeur wrote that she and others are "tired of such calculation and cowardice."

"These games have exhausted gay and lesbian voters" wrote Mizeur, who said she has exchanged vows with her partner. "Politicians who are too squeamish to stand with us when it counts must be put on notice that they will lose our financial and electoral support."

Mizeur is a Democratic National Committee member from Maryland who also works for Sen. John F. Kerry (D-Mass.) on Capitol Hill.
She is seeking one of the three District 20 House seats Two Democratic incumbents -- Shelia E. Hixson and Gareth E. Murray (D) -- are seeking reelection. Del. Peter Franchot, also a Democrat is giving up his House seat to run for state comptroller.

By Phyllis Jordan  |  February 9, 2006; 12:18 AM ET
Categories:  General Assembly , Same-Sex Marriage  
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