Rep. Huffman Votes to Enshrine Marriage Equality Under Federal Law

Respect For Marriage Act Now Heads to President Biden’s Desk to Become Law

December 08, 2022

Washington, D.C. – Today, amid extreme MAGA Republicans’ continued threats to the personal freedoms of folks across the U.S., Congressman Jared Huffman (D-San Rafael) voted to send the Respect for Marriage Act to President Joe Biden’s desk. This landmark legislation takes several key steps to defend marriage equality: officially repealing the bigoted and unconstitutional “Defense of Marriage Act” (DOMA), upholding couples’ right to equal protection under federal law and requiring states to recognize valid out-of-state marriages.

“No one should stand in the way of people marrying whom they love – and today, I voted to ensure the federal government will protect and respect same-sex and interracial marriages,” said Rep. Huffman. “MAGA Republicans are brazenly threatening folks’ personal freedoms, pushing their extreme dogma at the highest levels of government. But my Democratic colleagues and I are fighting against this to protect equality for every person in America.”

Since the Republican-appointed Supreme Court’s outrageous Dobbs decision, extreme Republicans have set their sights on other basic personal freedoms. In his concurring opinion, Clarence Thomas explicitly called for the Court to reconsider its Obergefell decision upholding marriage equality. 

The Respect for Marriage Act will take several steps to protect the inviolability of same-sex and interracial marriages:

  • Repealing the “Defense of Marriage Act”: While the Supreme Court has effectively voided DOMA, this unconstitutional and discriminatory federal law remains on the books. The Respect for Marriage Act will repeal this statute once and for all.
  • Enshrining Marriage Equality Into Federal Law: This legislation will uphold married couples’ right to equal protection in all areas covered under federal law, such as Social Security, tax filings and veterans’ benefits.
  • Barring Discrimination By State Officials: This legislation prohibits state officials from denying recognition of an out-of-state marriage on the basis of sex, race, ethnicity or national origin.

Previously passed by the House earlier this year, the Respect for Marriage Act was amended and advanced by the Senate last week. With today’s vote in the House, the final bill now heads to the President’s desk for his signature.

The Respect for Marriage Act is strongly supported by leading advocacy organizations, including the ACLU, Center for American Progress, Equality Federation, Family Equality, Freedom for All Americans, GLAD, Human Rights Campaign, Lambda Legal, National Black Justice Coalition, National Center for Lesbian Rights, National Women’s Law Center and PFLAG.