WASHINGTON, DC – Today, after the U.S. Senate voted 62-37 to advance the Respect for Marriage Act and federally enshrine both same-sex and interracial marriage rights for all Americans, U.S. Senator Jack Reed, a cosponsor of the landmark bill, issued the following statement:


“Regardless of race, color, creed, or sexual orientation, marriage is about love, respect, commitment, and the pursuit of happiness.  All Americans should be treated fairly and equally under the law.


“Today, a strong, bipartisan majority voted to ensure all loving, committed couples have their marriages lawfully recognized and rights respected under the law.  This is a win for fairness, marriage equality, and family stability. 


“Some activist justices on the Supreme Court have signaled a readiness and willingness to overturn cases that have become foundational to people’s lives.


“Today, the Senate, on a bipartisan basis, voted to protect people’s rights and affirm that couples, including same-sex and interracial couples, deserve equality and stability under the law.


“I look forward to final passage of the Respect for Marriage Act this week and I hope the House will swiftly follow suit and send the measure to President Biden to be signed into law.”


The Respect for Marriage Act would require the federal government to recognize a marriage between two individuals if the marriage was valid in the state where it was performed.  The bill would guarantee that valid marriages between two individuals are given full faith and credit, regardless of the couple’s sex, race, ethnicity, or national origin, but the bill would not require a State to issue a marriage license contrary to state law.


A similar bill championed by Congressman David Cicilline (D-RI) passed the U.S. House of Representatives in July and earned support from 47 Republicans.   The Senate measure advanced today added bipartisan language to protect religious liberty.


Today’s vote means the Respect for Marriage Act could be teed up for final passage by the U.S. Senate as soon as tomorrow.  Once the bill clears the U.S. Senate it must then be approved by the House before it is sent to President Joe Biden to be signed into law.