Nickles Asks Elections Board to Block Referendum
Attorney General Peter Nickles sent a letter this morning to the D.C. Board of Elections and Ethics asking members to reject a request to hold a referendum on whether to recognize same-sex marriages performed in other states.
"The established public policy of the District is to treat individuals as equals, whatever their gender, sexual orientation or maritial status may be, Nickles wrote.
The legislation, set to go into effect in early July, is opposed by a group of African-American ministers and same-sex marriage opponents. Supporters of same-sex marriage argue a referendum would violate elections law, which prohibits ballot initiatives on matters related to the Human Rights Act.
The elections board held a hearing on the issue yesterday, but left the record open for public comment until 5 p.m. today.
A decision is expected tomorrow or early next week. Nickles' contact with the board could strengthen gay rights advocates' arguments against the referendum.
June 11, 2009; 12:52 PM ET
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