In case you missed it amidst the excitement over yesterday’s DOMA announcement, Civil Unions are officially a go in Hawai’i:
Hawaii Gov. Neil Abercrombie signed same-sex civil unions into law Wednesday, calling it “a triumph for everyone” that gay and lesbian couples will have the same state rights as married partners.
Civil unions in the Rainbow State would start Jan. 1, 2012, making Hawaii the seventh state to permit civil unions or similar legal recognitions for gay couples. Five other states and the District of Columbia allow same-sex marriage.
“This bill represents equal rights for everyone in Hawaii, everyone who comes here. This is to me the essence of the aloha spirit,” Abercrombie said at a signing ceremony. “With its signing, I want to say ‘welcome’ to the world, come to paradise.”
A crowd of exuberant supporters yelled, cheered and applauded as the Democrat inscribed his signature on the legislation, making it the first law he’s enacted since he was elected in November. The bill passed the state Legislature last week.
Good deal. It’s a step in the right direction!