US House Passes Respect for Marriage Act
In the July 19 vote, Democrats in favor of the bill were joined by 74 Republicans. The bill would repeal the Defense of Marriage Act, which defined marriage federally as the union of a man and a woman and permitted states not to recognize same-sex marriages contracted in other states.
The House of Representatives voted in favor of a bill on Tuesday that would federally recognize same-sex marriage and provide legal protections for interracial marriages.
The Associated Press reported that the bill would bar a state “from denying out-of-state marriage licenses and benefits on the basis of sex, race, ethnicity or national origin.”
In the July 19 vote on the Respect for Marriage Act, Democrats in favor of the bill were joined by 74 Republicans.
The vote comes after the Supreme Court’s June decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, which overturned Roe v. Wade, and ahead of the November midterm elections.
The bill would repeal the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), a 1996 law signed by President Bill Clinton which defined marriage federally as the union of a man and a woman, and permitted states not to recognize same-sex marriages contracted in other states.
DOMA was already effectively nullified by the 2013 and 2015 Supreme Court decisions United States v. Windsor and Obergefell v. Hodges.
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., has not guaranteed a vote on the bill.
While the majority opinion in Dobbs said that “this decision concerns the constitutional right to abortion and no other right,” Democrats have highlighted the possibility that other recent decisions, such as Obergefell v. Hodges, might be overturned.
In his concurring opinion on Dobbs, Justice, Clarence Thomas did write, “Because the Court properly applies our substantive due process precedents to reject the fabrication of a constitutional right to abortion, and because this case does not present the opportunity to reject substantive due process entirely, I join the Court’s opinion. But, in future cases, we should ‘follow the text of the Constitution, which sets forth certain substantive rights that cannot be taken away, and adds, beyond that, a right to due process when life, liberty, or property is to be taken away.’ Substantive due process conflicts with that textual command and has harmed our country in many ways. Accordingly, we should eliminate it from our jurisprudence at the earliest opportunity."
- u.s. house of representatives
- same-sex marriage
- defense of marriage act
- respect for marriage act
- Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization