Obama supports Respect for Marriage Act as those impacted prep for first ever hearing

As we’ve mentioned repeatedly, tomorrow is the first ever Senate hearing on repealing DOMA. The hearing, “S.598, The Respect for Marriage Act: Assessing the Impact of DOMA on American Families” begins at 10 AM ET. S. 598, sponsored by Senator Feinstein has 27 cosponsors. The House version of the bill, H.R. 1116, is sponsored by Rep. Jerry Nadler and currently has 118 cosponsors.

In response to a question from MetroWeekly’s Chris Geidner, we learned from White House Press Secretary Jay Carney that the President supports the Respect for Marriage Act. H/T Igor Volsky for the video:

That’s going to generate a lot of buzz this afternoon. Now, the President should just completely evolve and support marriage.

In advance of tomorrow’s hearings, a number of the groups who have focused on marriage are providing compelling background on how DOMA impacts people.

From Freedom to Marry, we got this video of Ron Wallen from Indio, California who will be testifying:

GLAD is presenting Senators with a book titled, DOMA Stories: How Federal Marriage Discrimination Hurts American Families, a book featuring twenty same-sex married couples from Massachusetts, Connecticut, New Hampshire and Vermont.

GLAD has been collecting the stories since before filing its first DOMA (Defense of Marriage Act) lawsuit Gill v. Office of Personnel Management in 2009, and posting them at www.glad.org/doma/stories.

The book, which will be distributed to members of the Senate Judiciary Committee, features couples and families who have been deemed ineligible for military burial and to sponsor their spouse for citizenship; denied Family Medical Leave, burdened with higher taxes, denied their late spouse’s pension, denied health insurance for their spouse, and denied Social Security survivor benefits.

Andrew Sorbo, who is featured in the book, will be a witness on the panel with Ron Wallen.

The Courage Campaign held a press conference today with Senator Dianne Feinstein, the Senate sponsor of DOMA repeal. Adam Bink posted the testimony from three couples who are impacted by DOMA.


On October 27, 2010, Joe was one of five bloggers who interviewed President Obama. Joe is a DC-based political consultant with over twenty-five years of experience at both the state and federal level. Joe has managed political operations and legislative efforts for both candidates and issues-based organizations. For seven years, he was the Director of State Legislation at Handgun Control, Inc. He served as that organization's first Political Director during the 2000 cycle. Joe is a graduate of the University of Maine School of Law. In addition, he has a Masters in Public Administration from Lehigh University and received his B.A. from the University of New Hampshire. Joe also has a fun dog, Petey, a worthy successor to Boomer, who got Joe through eight years of Bush and Cheney. Joe likes to think he is a world class athlete having finished the 2005 Chicago Marathon in the time of 4:10. He has completed six other marathons as well -- and is still determined to break the four hour mark.

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