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Originally published January 10, 2012 at 3:46 PM | Page modified February 6, 2012 at 11:38 AM

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Second Republican state senator chooses to support marriage equality

State Sen. Cheryl Pflug is the second Republican in recent days to say she will support gay marriage legislation. Congratulations to her for her courage and leadership on an important issue.

Seattle Times Editorial

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THE state Senate is becoming a place of possibility. Sen. Cheryl Pflug is joining other lawmakers willing to vote to give same-sex couples the full rights and benefits of marriage.

She is commended for standing up to say what she believes, even if it does not perfectly mesh with her caucus.

Pflug of Maple Valley is the second Republican senator in recent days to say she will support gay-marriage legislation. She has voted for domestic-partnership benefits twice and believes strongly in fairness for all.

"I have been a longtime supporter of human equality," said Pflug. "I do not feel diminished by having another human being experience the same freedom I am entitled to exercise. I would feel diminished by denying another human the ability to exercise those same rights and freedoms."

The more senators and representatives who see this matter in the broad light of day the better.

Gay-marriage proponents think votes exist for passage in the state House; but the math is more complicated in the Senate. Pflug's bold stance helps a lot. She and her neighbor in Olympia legislative offices, Sen. Steve Litzow, R-Mercer Island, both support the legislation without a public vote.

Going to voters, as Pflug points out, is for times when lawmakers do not know what to do. Pflug knows exactly what to do. Fairness can come only from giving gays and lesbians the same rights and benefits as everyone else. Three cheers for Pflug for demonstrating courage and leadership.

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