Six states where same-sex couples can legally marry, that is.
Gov. John Lynch is expected to sign the legislation this evening. Assuming he does so, the law will take effect Jan. 1, 2010.
Lynch had threatened to veto any bill that did not include specific language stating churches and religious groups could not be forced to officiate at gay marriages. (Protections are in place already, but some folks like to see it spelled out.)
The Senate passed the measure this morning by a vote of 14-10. The House followed this afternoon, 198-176. The religious protections bill was an add-on to the same-sex marriage bill. Read more from the Union Leader and Boston Globe.
New Hampshire will join Massachusetts, Connecticut, Maine, Vermont and Iowa as states that permit same-sex marriage.
For a look at where the rest of the states stand, check out NPR’s map showing how legal battles are playing out across the country.