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Domestic partners bill approved

May 03, 2007|From the Associated Press

SALEM, ORE. — A bill giving Oregon's gay and lesbian couples the benefits of marriage through domestic partnerships won legislative approval Wednesday.

The Senate endorsed the measure 21 to 9, sending it to Gov. Ted Kulongoski. The governor supports gay rights, and he said he would sign the bill along with one passed earlier to ban discrimination based on sexual orientation.

The domestic partnership bill would enable same-sex couples to enter into contractual relationships that grant them the benefits that state law offers to married couples.

The measure won unanimous endorsement from the Senate's majority Democrats, with two Republicans joining them.

When Kulongoski signs the measure, Oregon will join Vermont, Connecticut, California, New Jersey, Maine and Washington state in offering civil unions or domestic partnerships to same-sex couples.

Massachusetts allows gay couples to marry.

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