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  Wash. Senate Passes Domestic Partnership Measure
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ContributorRalphie 
Last EditedRalphie  Mar 01, 2007 09:39pm
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News DateFriday, March 2, 2007 03:00:00 AM UTC0:0
DescriptionThe Washington state Senate on Thursday passed a measure that would create domestic partnerships for same-sex couples, over the objections of opponents who said the partnerships are essentially the same as marriage.

The measure passed on a 28-19 vote, with two lawmakers excused. It now heads to the House. Gov. Chris Gregoire is expected to sign the measure if it gets to her desk.

The bill would create a domestic partnership registry with the state, and would provide enhanced rights for same-sex couples, including hospital visitation, the ability to authorize autopsies and organ donations, and inheritance rights when there is no will.

To be registered, couples would have to share a home, not be married or in a domestic relationship with someone else, and be at least 18.

Similar to California law, unmarried, heterosexual senior couples would also be eligible for domestic partnerships if one partner were at least 62.
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