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Delaware Legislature Passes Bill to Allow Same-Sex Marriages

May 7 (Bloomberg) -- Delaware became the 11th state to recognize same-sex marriages after its Senate voted 12-9 to legalize gay weddings and to convert civil unions to marriages. Governor Jack Markell signed the bill into law, according to a statement from his office.

Delaware joined 10 states and Washington, D.C., in allowing same-sex marriage, including three where voters authorized it last year, according to the Washington-based Human Rights Campaign. Last week, Rhode Island Governor Lincoln Chafee, an independent, signed a bill authorizing gay weddings there.

“Today, we wrote a new chapter in our history and proved, once again, justice and equality continue to move forward in Delaware,” Markell, a 52-year-old Democrat, said in the statement.

The Civil Marriage Equality and Religious Freedom Act of 2013 take effect July 1, the governor said.

To contact the reporter on this story: James Nash in Los Angeles at jnash24@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Stephen Merelman at smerelman@bloomberg.net

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