BREAKING: U.S. Senate Passes Respect for Marriage Act

November 29, 2022 • 6:48 pm

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today a majority of U.S. Senators voted in favor of the Respect for Marriage Act, with 12 Republicans joining Democrats to pass this landmark legislation. The movement follows a previous bipartisan victory for the legislation in the U.S. House with support from 47 Republicans and every Democrat.

The Republicans who voted in favor of passage today include Collins (R-ME), Portman (R-OH), Tillis (R-NC), Blunt (R-MO), Burr (R-NC), Capito (R-WV), Ernst (R-IA), Lummis (R-WY), Murkowski (R-AK), Romney (R-UT), Sullivan (R-AK), amd Young (R-IA).

Hannah Willard, Vice President of Government Affairs at Freedom for All Americans, issued the following statement in response to the victory:

“Today’s victory is a shining example of how far we’ve come towards fully accepting and celebrating love, family, and the freedom to be our authentic selves. The Respect for Marriage Act will provide clarity and stability for hundreds of thousands of same-sex and interracial couples who are connected through the commitment of marriage. The momentum for the Respect for Marriage Act mirrors the overwhelming support for equal treatment for LGBTQ people among a supermajority of Americans. It is a clear indication that there is a promising pathway to bipartisan legislative agreement on issues that affect basic protections for all Americans and their families.

“While the Respect for Marriage Act is a significant bipartisan victory, it’s not enough. Members of Congress must seize on this momentum and pass common-sense, comprehensive nondiscrimination protections for LGBTQ people in all areas of our daily lives. This pro-freedom, pro-family legislation is not about partisan politics; it’s about people. Following a record-setting year of proposed anti-LGBTQ legislation in state legislatures around the country, Congress must take action to ensure our nation’s laws reflect its values of fairness and freedom for all, and that includes LGBTQ Americans and our families.”

The Respect for Marriage Act will affirm opinions in key U.S. Supreme Court rulings such as Loving v. VirginiaU.S. v. Windsor, and Obergefell v. Hodges that guaranteed the freedom to marry for same-sex and interracial couples. It repeals the discriminatory Defense of Marriage Act from federal statutes, which was struck down by the Supreme Court in Windsor. It ensures the freedom to marry for purposes of federal law, requiring that a couple be considered married if the couple’s marriage was valid in the state where it was performed; and prohibits any person acting under state law from denying full faith and credit to an out-of-state marriage based on the sex, race, ethnicity or national origin of the individuals in the marriage.

A Gallup poll from June 2022 found that 71% of Americans support the freedom to marry – more than ever before.

Because the Respect for Marriage Act was amended in the Senate, it now returns to the U.S. House, where it is expected to easily pass before being sent to the desk of President Biden, who has said he will sign it into law.

Freedom for All Americans is the bipartisan campaign to secure full nondiscrimination protections for LGBTQ people nationwide. Our work brings together Republicans and Democrats, businesses large and small, people of faith, and allies from all walks of life to make the case for comprehensive nondiscrimination protections that ensure everyone is treated fairly and equally.

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