New Mexico Senate kills domestic partnership bill denying equal rights to gays

After brief debate, the New Mexico state Senate rejected a bill that would have created domestic partnerships in the state, with opponents contending it was “marriage in disguise.” Supporters of the bill did a last-minute rewrite to remove references that could be construed as marriage-related, but that wasn’t enough to win the necessary votes.

Ten Democrats joined the chamber’s 15 Republicans to defeat the bill 25-17.

“I’m disappointed by the Senate’s actions today in defeating what is fundamentally an issue of civil rights and equality,” said Democratic Gov. Bill Richardson, who has been pushing the legislation for several years.

Watch Equality New Mexico and the ACLU address supporters of domestic partnership:

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