WASHINGTON — The House on Thursday passed landmark legislation that would federally protect same-sex and interracial marriage rights. Passing the bill moves it to President Joe Biden, who is expected to sign it.
- What is that?: The Respect for Marriage Act, passed by the Senate last week, guarantees federal recognition of any marriage between two people if it was valid in the state where they married. It also requires states to accept the legitimacy of a valid marriage performed elsewhere, but does not require any state to issue a marriage license contrary to its own law.
- Bill passes withRepublican support: It passed the Senate 61 to 36 in November with a dozen Republicans in support. On Thursday, dozens of Republican House members voted in favor of the bill.
- Biden should sign: The Respect for Marriage Act is heading to Biden’s desk to be signed into law.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi: ‘What a great day’
“What a beautiful day, isn’t it?” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said at a news conference after the bill passed, calling the legislation “a glorious triumph of love and freedom.”
She said Congress had succeeded in opposing an urgent threat to the values of nations.
“Finally, we made history. But not only are we on the right side of history, we’re on the right side of the future — expanding freedom in America,” Pelosi said.
Dozens of Republicans support respect for marriage law
Dozens of Republican lawmakers voted in favor of the Respect for Marriage Act in Thursday’s vote in the House.
The bill also received bipartisan support in the Senate – receiving a dozen votes from Republicans.
Respect for Marriage Act Passes House
Lawmakers voted 258 to 169, with one voting member present, to pass the same-sex marriage bill that will federally protect same-sex and interracial marriage rights.
The legislation is now heading to President Joe Biden’s desk to be signed into law.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi spotlights LGBTQ trailblazers
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said she supports the Honoring Marriage Act in memory of Phyllis Lyon and Del Martin, San Francisco’s first recognized same-sex couple and civil rights pioneers.
“Today, we uphold the values held dear by the vast majority of Americans – a belief in the dignity, beauty, and divinity of each person in a constant reverence for the love so powerful that it unites two people,” he said. she declared, standing next to a large photo of Lyon and Martin.
Pelosi said when she was first sworn in, her first speech in the House fought discrimination against people living with HIV and AIDS.
“My last bill, as president the first time, one of the last bills I signed, was the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” she said. added. “And now one of the last bills that I will sign into the registry will be this beautiful legislation, the Respect for Marriage Act, which we are passing today.
Rep. Jim Jordan: ‘No place for violence’
In response to Rep. Steny Hoyer, D-Md., referring to the shooting at a Colorado LGBTQ club last month, Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, said the Colorado shooting was “as bad as it gets.” , it was also wrong when churches and pregnancy centers in crisis were attacked after the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade earlier this year.
“There is no place for violence, but let’s be clear: let’s condemn all of this,” Jordan said. Of the Supreme Court, Jordan said, “Let’s do what we can to protect her. And let’s not stay on this concerted effort to bully the court.
Representative Hakeem Jeffries: “Respect freedom and justice for all”
Rep. Hakeem Jeffries, DN.Y., the next leader of the House Democrats, referenced the Declaration of Independence, which says “all men are created equal and are entitled to life, liberty and pursuit of happiness” and said the Respect for Marriage Act brought those words to light.
Jeffries said the work on the legislation responds to the conservative and “reckless” Supreme Court majority that threatens liberty.
“Respect freedom, respect freedom and justice for all,” he said.
LGBTQ representative: “We must rise to the challenge and we will win”
Rep. Mark Takano, D-Calif., the first openly gay member of color elected to the House, said the legislation was a reminder of the need for vigilance in the fight for human rights.
“When my colleagues and I pass the Respecting Marriage Act in the House today, it will mean the world to me, my loved ones, and to millions of Americans,” he said.
“We must rise to the challenge and we will win,” he added.
Representative Colin Allred urges his colleagues to support the bill
Rep. Colin Allred, D-Texas, said he was “enormously relieved” to learn that WNBA star Brittney Griner, who was released from a Russian prison on Thursday morning, will be returning home to his wife and from his family.
“The U.S. Congress will vote bipartisanly to pass the Respect for Marriage Act enshrining marriage equality in federal law and protecting marriages like Brittney’s,” he said.
Rep. Jim Jordan: Legislation ‘doesn’t go far enough’ to protect religious freedom
Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, said same-sex marriage legislation “doesn’t go far enough” to protect religious freedom.
“This bill is just the latest installment in the Democrats’ campaign to bully our nation’s highest court,” he said.
Jordan said Democrats want Americans to believe the Supreme Court could step in and overturn opinions like in Obergefell v. Hodges, a case that legalized same-sex marriage across the country.
5-year anniversary of marriage decision:Acceptance, advancement, but opposition remains
“That’s just not true,” he said, saying the Supreme Court wasn’t ready to overturn his opinions in Obergefell or Loving v. Virginia, which struck down laws banning interracial marriage.
Nancy Pelosi: ‘Thrilled’ the vote on the Respect for Marriage Act is one of the last bills as a speaker
Nancy Pelosi, who announced last month that she would be stepping down as Speaker of the House, celebrated the Respect for Marriage Act in a Washington Post op-ed on Wednesday.
“I’m thrilled that one of the last bills I’ll be signing as a speaker is the Respecting Marriage Act: Ensuring the Federal Government Will Never Stop Marrying the Person You Love Again,” said she writes.
Roe v. Wade overturn spurred action against same-sex marriage
Lawmakers drafted the bill in the wake of the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade in June. Associate Justice Clarence Thomas expressed interest in reconsidering same-sex and interracial marriage rights in a separate concurring opinion that no other justice joined.
Pelosi took aim at Thomas in his op-ed on Wednesday, saying, “Although his legal reasoning is twisted and ill-founded, we must take Judge Thomas – and the extremist movement behind him – at his word.”
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What does the Respect for Marriage Act do? The bill has just been passed in the Senate. What there is to know.
How does the bill address religion?
Some Republican lawmakers have argued that the bill would infringe on the rights of churches and other faith-based organizations, which could be punished for refusing to participate in or recognize same-sex unions if the legislation passes.
But senators added an amendment to the bill that left room for religious or conscientious objections. The bill’s bipartisan sponsors said the religious freedom language inserted into the amendment would protect churches and other faith-based entities from such violations.
If the bill is signed into law, individuals or groups would not be legally required to provide services for a wedding ceremony or celebration if it goes against their religious beliefs. Nor would it recognize polygamous unions.
After:Senate introduces same-sex marriage bill that also includes religious freedom protections
Senator Tammy Baldwin: Passage would put ‘fears to rest’
Sen. Tammy Baldwin, D-Wis., the first openly gay person to serve in the Senate, said its passage would allay the concerns of same-sex and interracial couples who fear their civil marriage rights and recognition will be taken away.
“The Senate has the opportunity to dispel these fears and give millions of people living in same-sex and interracial marriages the certainty, dignity and respect they need and deserve,” she said. before the vote.