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Public Statements

Issue Position: Fighting for LGBT Equality

Issue Position

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Opposing the Defense Of Marriage Act from the Beginning

Pallone was one of 67 members of the House of Representative to vote against passage of the Defense of Marriage Act in 1996. Pallone has joined with many of his colleagues in Congress in filing amicus briefs with various federal courts, including the Supreme Court, arguing that DOMA is in contravention of the Fifth Amendment and should be ruled unconstitutional. Pallone is also a co-sponsor of the Respect for Marriage Act which would repeal DOMA. Supporting Marriage Equality Pallone has long supported marriage equality. Pallone strongly condemned Governor Christie's veto of legislation passed by the New Jersey Legislature that would have legalized same-sex marriage in the state. He has been working to override the Governor's veto. He has also been outspoken in his opposition to Prop 8 and believes the Supreme Court should strike it down as unconstitutional.

Advocates for LGBT Workplace Protections

Pallone has been at the forefront of the fight for workplace protections for LGBT Americans. Pallone recently lead 110 members of Congress in writing to President Obama calling on him to sign an executive order that would prohibit federal contractors from discriminating in the workplace based on an individual's sexual orientation or gender identity. This was the second year in a row he lead such a letter. Pallone is also an original cosponsor of legislation--The Employee Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA)--which creates a federal ban on employment discrimination based on an individual's sexual orientation.

Fighting Bullying and LGBT Discrimination in Schools

Pallone met with the Garden State Equality's Youth Caucus after actor Kirk Cameron rejected their request to meet with him to discuss how his hurtful words have a negative impact on LGBT youth. Pallone is also advocating for passage of The Student Non-Discrimination Act (SNDA) which prohibits public schools from discriminating against any student on the basis of actual or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity. Pallone is an original cosponsor of The Tyler Clementi Higher Education Anti-Harassment Act of 2013 which requires colleges and universities receiving federal student aid to prohibit harassment and establishes a grant program to support campus anti-harassment programs.

Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Pallone was a strong voice in opposition to the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy in the United State military. He commended President Obama for repealing "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," stating that gay and lesbian service members should not have to lie about who they are to serve the country they love.

Congressional Leadership

Pallone is a leading voice in the Democratic Caucus in the House of Representatives pushing for action that will lead to LGBT equality. As the Communications Chair of the Democratic Policy Committee, he has partnered with LGBT organizations to brief members of Congress on what they can be doing to move marriage equality forward. Pallone also organized a briefing for members of Congress and their staff on the impacts of LGBT workplace discrimination and action that can be taken in order to help stop it.


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