One Colorado and Coalition Support the Passage of the Respect for Marriage Act in the U.S. Senate and Call for Further Action

Denver, CO –Today, One Colorado joined a coalition of 43 state lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ+) organizations representing millions of LGBTQ+ individuals to thank the U.S. Senate for passing the Respect for Marriage Act and to call for continued action to protect LGBTQ+ people in this country. The Respect for Marriage Act passed in the U.S. Senate on a bipartisan vote of 61-36. After today’s modifications, the bill will return to the U.S. House of Representatives for a concurrence vote.

“One Colorado is proud to have partnered with leading LGBTQ+ state organizations to ensure further protections of our community, and we congratulate the Senate on the passage of the Respect for Marriage Act ” said Nadine Bridges, MSW (she, her, hers) One Colorado Executive Director. “However, this is only a first step! We urge our legislators to prioritize federal non-discrimination protections for all LGBTQ+ residents and take action to ensure the passage of the Equality Act.”

“The Respect for Marriage Act is only one of the ways in which we must work to ensure LGBTQ+ people are treated fairly and equally under the law. The bipartisan vote on this demonstrates that we are able to have these important conversations across the aisle and work together to protect our community, and that’s what we must continue to work for. Our community — and especially transgender people — are already under fierce attack. Right now, we are seeing grave assaults on people’s basic liberties across the board — from denying reproductive freedom to the passage of school censorship laws to efforts to criminalize established, life-saving healthcare for transgender youth. But it doesn’t stop there. Our community was recently attacked in a violent shooting at Club Q — one of the few safe gathering spaces for LGBTQ+ people in Colorado Springs. We must join with all our communities and fight these attacks head-on. We must do more to ensure that we can all live safely, with dignity and respect.” Read the full coalition statement.

One Colorado extends gratitude to our U.S. Senators Michael Bennett and John Hickenlooper for their support of the bill and ongoing commitment to improving the lives of LGBTQ+ Coloradans and their families. We also extend our appreciation to Wisconsin U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin for championing this bill and her bipartisan efforts to see it passed.

The Respect for Marriage Act is a popular, bipartisan bill that would require states and the federal government to respect the marriages of same-sex and interracial couples, which is what our nation does now. In August of this year, the legislation cleared the U.S. House of Representatives with a strong bipartisan majority of 267 members – including 47 Republicans, and President Joe Biden has vowed to sign it into law.

The Respect for Marriage Act is simple – it would:

  • Repeal DOMA and get this anti-marriage federal law off the books.
  • Ensure that the federal government respects all marriages equally for federal law purposes, and require that an individual be considered married if the couple’s marriage was valid in the state where it was performed.
  • Prohibit any state government or person acting under color of state law from denying full faith and credit to an out-of-state marriage based on the sex, race, ethnicity or national origin of the individuals in the marriage.

Passing the Respect for Marriage Act is one action the federal government can take to protect LGBTQ+ families and all families – and ensure the dignity, stability, and ongoing protection that marriage affords to families and children. Passing the Equality Act is a next step the federal government can take to ensure consistent and explicit federal non-discrimination protections for all LGBTQ+ people in areas of housing, employment, and public accommodations.