Governor, President react to gay marriage approval

Tweet sent by President Obama
Tweet sent by President Obama

HONOLULU (AP) - Gov. Neil Abercrombie says he looks forward to signing a bill given final approval Tuesday by the Hawaii Senate to legalize same-sex marriage in the state.

Abercrombie says the bill "provides marriage equity and fully recognizes and protects religious freedoms."

President Barack Obama praised the bill's passage, saying the affirmation of freedom and equality makes the country stronger. He says the vote makes him "even prouder" to have been born in Hawaii.

Maui Democratic Sen. J. Kalani English said the bill is an "expansion of aloha in Hawaii."

Sen. Sam Slom, the chamber's only Republican, said the government should stay out of legislating marriage.

Officials in Abercrombie's office said details of a signing ceremony for Hawaii's measure were still being finalized.

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