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New Hampshire
governor says he'll approve civil unions bill

New Hampshire
governor says he'll approve civil unions bill

New Hampshire governor John Lynch said Thursday he will sign legislation establishing civil unions for gay couples in the state. ''I believe it is a matter of conscience, fairness, and preventing discrimination,'' Lynch told the Associated Press in Concord, the state capital.

New Hampshire would become the fourth state to adopt civil unions, following Connecticut, Vermont, and New Jersey. Massachusetts has established same-sex marriage.

Lynch had previously declined to take a public position on civil unions, though he has supported offering health benefits to same-sex partners of state workers. He came under fire from both sides for not weighing in, especially after a delay last week of the senate vote on the house-passed bill.

The senate votes next week, and Lynch said he is confident the legislation will pass. It would authorize civil unions beginning next year. (Norma Love, AP)

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