Lambda Legal: NEW YORK Dec. 13, 2022 Lambda Legal today applauded President Biden's signing today of the Respect for Marriage Act. The law eliminates the federal Defense of Marriage Act, while acknowledging the existing constitutional and other religious liberty rights to oppose marriage for same-sex couples and provides that houses of worship and certain other religious entities cannot be forced to provide goods, services, or facilities for the solemnization or celebration of same-sex couples' marriages. The amendment also confirms that the law cannot be interpreted in a way that would allow polygamous marriages.
Lambda Legal CEO Kevin Jennings stated:
"With his signature today, President Biden has erased the discriminatory federal Defense of Marriage Act from the books and protected LGBTQ+ families from the possible depredations of a rogue Supreme Court."
Lambda Legal Chief Legal Officer Jennifer C. Pizer added:
"Today we are witness to the final erasure of the discriminatory federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which has been an ugly stain on our federal statute books since 1996. While not perfect, the Respect for Marriage Act ensures marriages solemnized validly anywhere in these United States are valid everywhere in our country without government discrimination based on sex, race, ethnicity, or national origin. As important, those marriages are protected from the possible attacks of an extremist Supreme Court were it to take the outrageous, discriminatory step of erasing the fundamental right to marry.
"However, as we are now entering a new year with discriminatory state legislatures readying new attacks on LGBTQ+ people and everyone living with HIV, especially targeting transgender youth, now more than ever we need the Equality Act to follow the Respect for Marriage Act quickly into the U.S. Code."
GLAAD: (Washington, DC, Dec. 13, 2022) GLAAD, the world's largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) media advocacy organization, is responding to the enactment of the Respect for Marriage Act, signed into law at a White House celebration today by President Joe Biden.
The law was passed with bipartisan support in Congress and is one of the first pieces of Congressional legislation explicitly protecting LGBTQ people.
Statement from GLAAD President and CEO Sarah Kate Ellis:
"Today, as it always does, love wins. The new law will protect LGBTQ Americans and couples of different races, and their families, recognizing that they and their marriages are as loving and worthy of recognition as any other couple. GLAAD is proud to be among all those at the White House celebration today who helped achieve this milestone and continue to fight for equality, freedom, and acceptance for every LGBTQ person."
About GLAAD: GLAAD rewrites the script for LGBTQ acceptance. As a dynamic media force, GLAAD tackles tough issues to shape the narrative and provoke dialogue that leads to cultural change. GLAAD protects all that has been accomplished and creates a world where everyone can live the life they love.
NextGen America:. In response to President Biden signing the Respect for Marriage Act, NextGen America President Cristina TzintzÀ n Ramirez released the following statement:
"Today, President Biden is signing the Respect for Marriage Act into law, delivering a massive victory for America's young LGBTQ+ people that cannot be understated. The Respect for Marriage Act protects our basic civil liberties and ensures people can love and marry who they want.
"This November, young people showed up at historic levels and proved that we truly are the most progressive generation in our nation's history. This legislation is exactly what young people want to see from their elected leaders, and it's the type of action they will continue to turn out and vote for in the future. We believe in a government that reflects us, respects us, and represents us so whether it's marriage equality, climate justice, economic justice, or other civil rights, NextGen is committed to mobilizing young people and using our strength in numbers to fight against every MAGA Republican who wishes to hold us in the past."
About NextGen America: NextGen America is the leading national organization for engaging young people through voter education, registration and mobilization. We invite 18-to-35 year olds the largest and most diverse generation in American history into our democracy to ensure our government works for them and to find new solutions to the dire challenges facing our society and the world. Since 2013, NextGen America has registered more than 1.3 million young voters and contacted 9.6 million young eligible voters during the historic 2022 midterm elections.
Catholic LGBTQ New Ways Ministry:
Statement of Francis DeBernardo, Executive Director, New Ways Ministry
MOUNT RAINIER, MarylandNew Ways Ministry joins with faithful Catholics across the U.S. in rejoicing at the signing of the Respect for Marriage Act, which helps protect the right of same-gender couples to marry.
We are particularly proud that this bill was shepherded through the House of Representatives by a Catholic, Honorable Nancy Pelosi. That it was signed into law by a Catholic, President Joe Biden, is an even greater reason to be proud. They are leaders who have imbibed Catholic Social Teaching, and their beliefs in the human dignity and equality of all people are inscribed in this Act.
The fact that these two Catholic leaders have helped make this law possible reflects the immense movement in the U.S. Catholic Church for support for LGBTQ+ people, especially in regard to same-gender relationships.
Legal protection for same-gender couples is a family value that many Catholics desireeven Pope Francis has said that these couples deserve protections. Catholics want same-gender couples to receive the same societal protections and benefits that opposite-sex couples enjoy. Family stability and equality are strong Catholic values.
The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops opposed this legislation, even as the bill received support from other conservative Christian denominations such as the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints and the Seventh Day Adventists, who previously opposed any protection for marriage equality. The Catholic bishops' opposition is based on the idea that the bill does not provide enough religious exemptions, yet other religious leaders, legal analysts, and politicians who value faith are confident that the bill protects religious institutions.
During the recent synodal conversations held around the country, Catholics resoundingly called for the church's hierarchy to dialogue more with and about LGBTQ+ people. This new law, which was supported by so many Catholic people and legislators, provides a perfect opportunity for the bishops to open up the much-needed, much-requested, and long overdue dialogue about equality for LGBTQ+ people.
New Ways Ministry is a 45-year old national Catholic ministry of justice and reconciliation for LGBT people and the church. For more information visit: www.NewWaysMinistry.org .