O’Malley touts Md. gay marriage bill in Web video

Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley appeared Monday in the first of a series of videos aimed at encouraging support for a bill that would authorize same-sex marriage in the state.

Mr. O'Malley, a Democrat, appeared in a 47-second video posted to the website of Marylanders for Marriage Equality — an activist coalition that is lobbying the General Assembly to legalize gay marriage during next year’s legislative session.

Mr. O’Malley, who plans to sponsor a gay-marriage bill during the session, reaffirmed his support of gay marriage in the video and called on state residents to support the cause.

The governor also put relatively equal emphasis on his desires to not only establish “marriage equality” in the state, but to also “protect religious freedom.”

Opponents have largely offered religious objects to gay marriage, and Mr. O'Malley’s bill is expected to include language that would exempt religious organizations from having to perform gay-marriage ceremonies or accommodate gay couples.

The inclusion of such language was vital in New York’s legalization of gay marriage this summer.

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