D.C. considers
new protections for gay couples

The Washington,
D.C., city council is considering expanding rights for
gay and lesbian couples, but that doesn't include legalizing
equal marriage rights, much to the chagrin of some
activists, The
Washington Post reported Monday.
D.C. council member Jim Graham told the
newspaper that he is "seriously considering"
introducing a bill that would legalize marriage for
gay and lesbian couples who live in the district. That
could be a tough piece of legislation to push through:
Congress has final say over D.C. and would probably
veto such a measure. "Not doing what you believe
in is a very uneasy feeling," Graham, one of two
openly gay council members, told the Post.
David A. Catania, who is the other gay council
member and who quit the Republican Party over its
opposition to gay equality, told the newspaper: "If
the district trots out too far, we become a cause celebre
for Congress to whip on." A better strategy, he said,
is to "try to make sustainable advances instead of
ideal advances."
Meanwhile, the new plan being considered by the
council would expand tax and inheritance benefits. It
gives partners powers of attorney, the ability to sue
for negligence, and immunity from testifying against one
another. The bill also allows the equivalent of prenuptial
agreements and alimony-like obligations if a breakup
occurs, the newspaper reported. (Advocate.com)

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