Gov. Neil Abercrombie told Al Jazeera Monday that he expects Hawaii’s legislature will pass a bill legalizing gay marriage “within a week or so,” in a state that just two decades ago prompted an international dialogue on marriage equality.
The Democrat was interviewed after a special session of his state legislature in Honolulu, which he called to debate the passage of state Senate Bill 1.
The state’s House of Representatives plans to pass the bill Thursday, if it successfully passes through the Senate, Reuters reported. Democrats make up the majority in both chambers.
“The bill primarily is in response to the recent Supreme Court decisions and legal action that was taken in our state with regard to equality issues that we think the bill will resolve,” Abercrombie said.
In June, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which had restricted marriage to heterosexual couples. The ruling resulted in the federal recognition of gay marriages in states where it is legal. President Barack Obama advised federal agencies to review their policies in accordance with the judiciary’s ruling, effectively opening immigration rights, for example, to the foreign spouses of gay U.S. nationals.