Gay Hawaiian Rep Talks Civil Unions

By Advocate.com Editors

Originally published on Advocate.com May 03 2010 4:15 PM ET

A Hawaii state representative told his colleagues Friday that he is gay,
right as the legislature approved a bill to legalize civil unions for
same-sex couples.

Rep. Blake Oshiro told KITV News that he decided to bring the civil unions bill up for a vote the night before it was actually passed, a surprise move for legislators in an election year.

Oshiro reportedly does not typically talk about his sexual orientation, but he said he felt it was important due to the 31-20 vote, which passed the bill.

"It was really heartwarming to me, to know that at the end of the day people are willing to do what they need to do, do what they came here to do, and not just worry about keeping their jobs," he said in the report.

Oshiro will face Gary Okino, a conservative Honolulu city council member, when he runs for reelection in the fall.