Hundreds take to the streets for referendum 71 - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Hundreds take to the streets for referendum 71

MEAD, Wash. - The fight over Referendum 71 is officially heating up, as hundreds of people across the state and here locally rallied both for and against referendum 71.

That referendum will allow voters to approve or reject the expansion of gay rights in Washington.

Both sides battled it out head to head today out near Mead High School late this afternoon.

The intense rallies, come just a few months after gay rights groups in Washington celebrated a major legislative victory.  In May Governor Gregoire signed the sweeping domestic partnership law effectively guaranteeing the same rights to gay couples as straight ones. Some people call it, "The everything but marriage law."

Washington State now allows recently passed laws to be affirmed or rejected by voters and that's why Referendum 71 is on the ballot this November. Now, both sides are actively speaking out for what's proving to be a tough campaign.

It's a long term issue since the beginning of time," says John Tusant who opposes the referendum. " We believe that only man and women can create a marriage."

"We are all different we are all citizens," said Rhonda Brown, who supports the referendum. " It's important that we have equal rights and we aren't denied them based on religion or culture."

These rallies were just two of many rallies today, including ones in Tukwilla, Gig Harbor and Vancouver.

Kaitlyn Buldoc
KHQ Reporter

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