Rhode Island State Rep. Frank Ferri, center left, and his partner Tony Caparco, far left, greet Wendy Baker, center right, and her partner Judy McDonnell, third from right, at the Statehouse in Providence, R.I. on Thursday.
Lawmakers in Rhode Island's House on Thursday easily passed a bill to allow gay marriage, putting the state one step closer to joining the rest of New England in legal recognition of same-sex couples.
But observers on both sides of the issue said that the ultimate fate of the legislation was hard to call.
The bill passed the House 51-19, but it faces a much more difficult battle in the state Senate, supporters and opponents said.
For the full story: