This week, Congresswoman Suzan DelBene sponsored the Respect for Marriage Act, the bill to repeal the discriminatory Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). The bill has 161 original cosponsors in the House and 41 in the Senate.
The Supreme Court yesterday struck down Section 3 of DOMA as unconstitutional, paving the way for married same-sex couples to participate fully in federal programs. However, Congress must still repeal the law in its entirety. The Respect for Marriage Act provides legislative action to ensure that all lawfully married couples will be recognized under federal law, no matter where they live. It repeals Section 2 of DOMA, which excuses states from honoring the legal marriages of same-sex couples performed by a sister state. The bill also provides a uniform rule for addressing the inequities that still exist in the administration of more than 1,100 federal laws affected by DOMA, such as Social Security and veterans' benefits.
"Yesterday's Supreme Court ruling was a huge victory for equality, but there is still much work to do. While the Court's decision makes it clear that the federal government cannot discriminate against lawfully married couples, Congress must take steps to ensure that all same-sex couples are recognized and afforded the federal protections and benefits they deserve, regardless of where they live," said DelBene. "Passing the Respect for Marriage Act will repeal the discriminatory DOMA law once and for all."