The new law will allow thousands of gay couples living in Hawaii, as well as tourists visiting the islands, to marry in the state from the second of December. A researcher at the University of Hawaii has estimated that the introduction of marriage equality to the so-called Aloha State will boost tourism by $217 million over the next three years, as Hawaii becomes an idyllic destination for gay & lesbian couples, bringing ceremonies, receptions and honeymoons to the islands.
US President, Barack Obama, praised the bill’s passage, saying the affirmation of freedom and equality makes the country stronger.
“I’ve always been proud to have been born in Hawaii, and today’s vote makes me even prouder,” Mr Obama said.
“This is nothing more than the expansion of aloha in Hawaii,” said Sen. J. Kalani English, a Democrat from Maui who voted in favour of the legislation.
For those interested in viewing the historic event online, HawaiiNewsNow.com will be streaming the event live on their website.