Gay MarriageYesterday, the Maryland State Senate voted to legalize gay marriage in the state. The measure will now go to the governor who has stated that he plans to sign the bill into law.

February has seen quite a flurry of activity on the gay marriage front. In addition to the Ninth Circuit finding Proposition 8 unconstitutional, the ballot measure that effectively revoked the right to gay marriage in California, a U.S. District Court judge found DOMA unconstitutional by denying health benefits to a federal lesbian employee, Washington became the 7th state to legalize gay marriage, and the New Jersey governor vetoed gay marriage after it had passed in both houses, stating he believes the issue better decided by the people than the legislature.

Washington state, Massachusetts, Vermont, New Hampshire, Connecticut, Iowa, New York and the District of Columbia currently allow such marriages.

Aside from the irony that these marriage decisions have been made in the same month as Valentine's Day, it also struck me that the 13 original colonies of the United States were Delaware, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Georgia, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Maryland, South Carolina, New Hampshire, Virginia, New York, North Carolina, and Rhode Island. Thus, of the original colonies, almost half of them have passed gay marriage at the legislature level.

Of the states who have not legalized gay marriage, the remaining states essentially fall into two camps, legal system supporting civil unions or their equivalent (Delaware, Rhode Island) or some sort of outright banning of gay marriage (Carolinas, Georgia, Pennsylvania, Virginia).