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DOMA Repeal: Sen. Dianne Feinstein Introduces Respect For Marriage Act

by David Badash on March 16, 2011

in Gay Agenda,Marriage,News,Politics

Post image for DOMA Repeal: Sen. Dianne Feinstein Introduces Respect For Marriage Act

Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) Wednesday afternoon introduced the first-ever DOMA repeal bill in the Senate. DOMA, the law declared unconstitutional by both President Obama and Attorney General Holder, as well as two federal court judges in several different cases, bans the federal government from recognizing same-sex marriages, and allows states to not allow these marriages either.


Last month, literally hours after the president made the historic announcement that he would no longer defend DOMA in court, although he still enforces the law, Senator Feinstein announced she would introduce this bill. Her bill mirrors a DOMA repeal bill introduced this morning in the House, which already has 102 co-sponsors.

Feinstein is an ideal standard-bearer for the DOMA repeal bill in the Senate, as she voted against the unconstitutional law in 1996, and she represents the 18,000 same-sex couples in California who are legally married but because of Proposition 8, are no longer able to change their marital status or remarry, much less access the more than 1100 federal benefits opposition-sex couples are automatically allowed merely because of their orientation.

Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) is a co-spo0nsor of Feinstein’s DOMA repeal bill, the Respect for Marriage Act of 2011, and in a press release stated, “I am proud to stand with Sen. Feinstein and others as we fight to end this 14-year-old policy and make sure all married couples are treated equally in the eyes of the federal government,” adding, “I strongly support President Obama’s decision to stop defending DOMA in court and now it’s time that we take another step forward and fully repeal this law,” reports Seattle PI.

The bill currently has seventeen cosponsors, including Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, a staunch supporter of the LGBT community, who was instrumental in the passage of the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.

Other cosponsors of The Respect for Marriage Act include Senators Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), John Kerry (D-Mass.), Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.), Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), Frank R. Lautenberg (D-N.J.), Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), Al Franken (D-Minn.), Patty Murray (D-Wash.), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.), Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.), Mark Udall (D-Colo.), Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.), Dan Inouye (D-Hawaii), Daniel Akaka (D-Hawaii), and Chris Coons (D-Del.).

Freshman Senator Coons, via a press release, said, “There are too many young people growing up in Delaware and throughout the United States who think the world is against them because they are gay,” and added, “[r]epealing DOMA is one way we can tell a whole generation of young Americans that they should not give up and that their country respects them enough to treat them as equal to every other American.”

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John Smith March 16, 2011 at 9:02 pm

Because of DOMA, I am $30,000 (& growing) in debt, trying to stay with the one I was meant to be with.

Every day brings threats of deportation for both of us.

People speak of choice. The only choice I face is death now or a slow death under DOMA.
But there is another way: repeal DOMA, return to me what should have been mine, my inalienable right to the pursuit of happiness.

Jose March 22, 2011 at 7:46 pm

God bless Dianne, I am so glad that I voted for her.

Chris April 6, 2011 at 6:05 pm

It is time for this utterly Unconstitutional and Evil DOMA Act to be shot down in flames. Thank you, Dianne, for standing up with the millions of GLBT in the US who are presently persecuted under this hateful Act.
Since it does nothing to "Defend" Marriage (as if Marriage needs any defense), even its name was deceitful… it should have been named POGA (Persecution of Gays Act).
Leave it up to the individuals' Sects to decide whether or not to accept alternative couples or not… there was never any place for this disgusting piece of hogwash in the Federal System in the first place. The time to dump it is NOW !

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