Del. Patrick N. Hogan, one of the Republican delegates being courted by same-sex marriage advocates in Maryland, said Wednesday that he intends to vote against the legislation this week.
Hogan (R-Frederick) had previously said he felt “conflicted” about the bill, which is expected to be debated by the full House of Delegates starting Thursday.
In a statement Wednesday, Hogan said: “I will not be supporting this bill.”
“While I do believe that the law should afford the same protections to all couples in Maryland, I do not believe we need to use the word ‘marriage’ to do that,” Hogan said.
An amendment that would have substituted civil unions for marriage was defeated Tuesday by a pair of House panels that voted jointly to send the legislation to the floor.
Thus far, Del. Robert A. Costa of Anne Arundel County is the only GOP member of the House to announce his support for the legislation.
Supporters of the bill, sponsored by Gov. Martin O’Malley (D), have said they are cautiously optimistic they will secure enough votes to pass legislation that died last year in the House.
Both sides are making late-hour pitches to wavering delegates. On Wednesday, Marylanders for Marriage Equality, a coalition lobbying for passage of the bill, announced the support of another African-American minister from Prince George’s County: Guy Molock of Beloved Community Church.