The US Senate has passed landmark legislation protecting same-sex marriage. The Respect Marriage Bill passed by a vote of 61 to 36 and now goes into the Democrat-controlled House before going to the President’s desk for final approval.
Groundbreaking same-sex marriage law wins Senate passage
Pennsylvania Democratic Senator Bob Casey says he’s proud to vote for the act.
In a statement, he says he will continue to fight for full equality for the LGBTQ community.
Here is his full statement:
“The right to marry is sacred and should be granted to every American. At a time when personal rights and freedoms are increasingly under attack, the Senate has taken action to protect Americans’ right to marry whom they love. I am proud to vote for the Respect Marriage Act and I will continue to work for full equality for the LGBTQ community. Discrimination has no place in our country.”
Pennsylvania’s other senator, the retired Republican senator. Pat Toomey, did not vote.
Earlier this month he released a statement saying the law would bring no significant benefit to same-sex marriages, which do not yet exist, and that the legislation threatens freedom of religion.
Here is the full statement as of November 16:
“For over 25 years, I have supported efforts to end discrimination based on sexual orientation. The Supreme Court has recognized a right to same-sex marriage, and its recent majority ruling in the Dobbs case made it abundantly clear that fears that the Court will overturn that right are “unfounded”.
“While the Respect for Marriage Act purports to codify the existing right to same-sex marriage, which is not at risk, it goes far beyond that and threatens freedom of religion. This legislation would allow activists to sue religious groups that provide vital services to our communities to force them to abandon their deeply held beliefs about marriage or to shut their doors.
“Faith-based adoption agencies, like the Philadelphia Catholic Adoption Agency, have already come under attack for holding on to their faith, even though there are other local adoption agencies that place children with same-sex couples. This legislation would dramatically increase the risk of litigation aimed at putting these religious organizations out of business.
“The Respect for Marriage Act provides no meaningful benefit to same-sex marriage that does not already exist. It seriously threatens religious freedom.”