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Gibbons Veto Throws Away Gay Tourist Dollar?

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 By Mike CliffordContact
May 27, 2009

Las Vegas, NV – Nevada’s debate over domestic partnership rights for gay people could be about to hit the state smack in the pocketbook— when it comes to gay tourist dollars. Governor Jim Gibbons vetoed the proposed domestic partnership bill Monday on the grounds it violated the state’s constitution. The bill sponsor, Sen. David Parks (D-Clark County), says the governor is wrong on the law and the veto could dry up what has been a growing source of tourism dollars for the Silver State.

"Among travel destinations, Las Vegas is considered the second-most-popular for gay and lesbian travelers. The failure to pass this bill could end up being a black eye."

Tod Story, a board member of the Gay & Lesbian Community Center of Southern Nevada, says Gibbons' veto was disappointing, but not unexpected. He says the bill would have provided basic legal protections.

"You’d like to have some security in knowing that property, or those children who are all part of the relationship, are somehow going to be afforded the security of knowing that the life you created together is actually going to remain in force."

A veto override attempt in the state senate could come as early as Thursday. Harrah’s Entertainment and the three-largest newspapers in the state all support the measure, while Gov. Gibbons contends the bill goes too far by giving rights to gay people that are reserved for marriage between a man and a woman.

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