Same-sex marriage opponents have taken the first steps to bring legislation legalizing gay marriage in Maryland to a voter referendum.
Delegate Neil Parrott said he filed draft language for a referendum petition with the state board of elections Friday.
It comes a day after the Senate joined the House in approving a bill to allow same-sex marriages. Gov. Martin O'Malley endorses the measure and plans to sign it next week.
The board has a week to consider the submission and if it is approved, Parrott and others will begin collecting the nearly 56,000 signatures needed to bring the measure to the November ballot.
Gay marriage advocates said they will fight to make sure the law is upheld and that they think it is inappropriate to leave the issue to the discretion of voters.