governor Lee Sherman Dreyfus, who in 1982 signed the
first statewide gay rights law in the U.S., has died. He was
Wednesday at his home near Milwaukee, said Lee S. Dreyfus
Jr. on Thursday. He had suffered from heart and breathing
The gay rights
measure Dreyfus signed made it illegal to discriminate on
the basis of sexual orientation in housing, employment, and
public accommodations. Activists gathered in Madison
last year to mark the 25th anniversary of the law.
Republican who Wisconsin's 40th governor, was also a vocal
opponent of the state's ban on same-sex marriage and civil
unions, which was approved by voters in 2006.
1982, Dreyfus earned respect for his businesslike
approach to politics.
interested in the political maneuvering,'' said Tom Loftus,
who served as the Democratic majority leader in the assembly
during Dreyfus's term. ''He would propose something,
and whatever the legislature came up with, he would
work with that.'' (AP)