Joe Saunders

Stan Jastrzebski

Democratic lawmakers have drafted a 150-page primer for how the state should regulate medical marijuana if its use is approved by voters in the fall. But if their bill is passed, Rep. Joe Saunders (D-Orlando) and Sen. Jeff Clemens (D-Lake Worth) may have to answer to those in their party hoping marijuana voters are also Democratic voters. Monday, Senate Minority Leader Chris Smith (D-Ft. Lauderdale) stood up for his colleagues, but did allow that some members of his party are privately cringing.

It’s been five years since Floridians voted to define marriage as one man and one woman in the state constitution. But this year, bills that would ban discriminating against gay people and allow them to enter into domestic partnerships are getting bipartisan support in the Legislature. Supporters of the bills say the Legislature seems to be changing its attitude toward equality.

Tuesday will be the first time a Florida legislative committee will consider allowing domestic partnerships for all couples, gay or straight.