Delaware is the 11th state to allow same-sex marriage after a divided state Senate gave its approval Tuesday. Less than an hour after the 12-9 vote, Gov. Jack Markell signed the measure into law.
"I do not intend to make any of you wait one moment longer," Markell told about 200 supporters who erupted in cheers and applause after the Senate vote.
"I am elated," said Scott Forrest, 50, of Newark, who entered into a civil union last year with his partner of almost 21 years, Kevin.
The bill was introduced in the Democrat-controlled legislature barely a year after Delaware began recognizing same-sex civil unions. The bill won passage two weeks ago in the state House, 23-18.
No new civil unions will be performed after July 1, and existing civil unions will be converted to marriages over the next year.