Updated June 12, 2020
The House of Representatives failed to secure a 2/3 majority to suspend its rules and allow the vote on HB1599 to go forward. The bill is stalled, for now. We will proceed with our planned Zoom call on Monday, June 15th (see below) to respond to any questions and prepare for next steps, if needed. All the behind-the-scenes details are here.
Special Marriage Officiant Bill
During the spring of 2020, the Special Marriage Officiant bill (HB1599) worked its way through the New Hampshire General Court, despite JPUs’ efforts to block it. We haven’t given up, though. To be successful and block the bill, we will need many state residents to contact their legislators and explain why this bill is problematic. Not just JPs, but their friends and family too.
We anticipate that the bill will be brought before the House of Representatives for a vote on June 11, 2020. And then after that, to the state Senate. There are 400 members in the House, and it is unlikely that we’d make much headway. For this reason, we are concentrating our efforts on the state Senate.
There are 24 state Senators in New Hampshire. With a concerted outreach, we can present our case and explain why the Special Marriage Officiant bill is misguided. Personal, one-on-one conversations will be the best way to influence the Senators and convince them to oppose this bill.
- See these Talking Points to guide your conversations.
- Join the Zoom call for support so you can contact your senator
Zoom Q&A: Monday, June 15, 2020 at Noon
Join our Zoom call to ask questions about this legislation. Learn about what has already transpired. Hear some tips for conversations with your state senator. This call is open to JPus members and non-members.
Meeting ID: 891 4902 2462
- Follow along with our Talking Points to guide your conversations.
- This spring 2020’s activity fighting HB1599
- Read JPus’ proposed alternative language for the 2020 special marriage officiant bill.
- The story of JPus’ spring 2019 behind the scenes activity is available.
- In 2019 JPus submitted written testimony to the NH legislature at various junctures. Read the testimony.
- JPus submitted a One-Day Rule white paper to MA Governor Baker’s office that summarizes the problems with temporary officiants in the state. These problems would likely happen in New Hampshire too, if the bill was enacted.
- Legalizing special marriage officiants jeopardizes the systems that are in place to protect children from coercion into marriage. Read about JPus’ efforts to end child marriage.