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House of Representatives defeats domestic partnership bill

Jan 31, 2013 - By Ben Neary, The Associated Press

CHEYENNE -- A bill that would have would have allowed same-sex couples in Wyoming to create domestic partnerships carrying most of the legal rights of marriage died Wednesday on a close vote in the House of Representatives.

Meanwhile, a bill that would prohibit discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation is headed to the full Senate after clearing the Senate Judiciary Committee earlier in the day.

The House voted 35-24 against the domestic partnership bill. It was the first time at least in recent decades that pro-gay legislation reached a full floor debate.

Proponents said the bill would grant same-sex couples as well as other citizens a way to share their property and make health care decisions for each other.

Rep. Sue Wallis, R-Recluse, was a co-sponsor of the bill. She said her husband recently died and she had no trouble under state law taking care of arrangements and handling property issues.

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Legislature, Wyoming