The Senate has advanced a bill to codify marriage equality into federal law. On Wednesday, 12 Republican senators joined all 50 members of the Democratic caucus to end debate on the Respect for Marriage Act, setting up final votes in the House and Senate before the start of the new Congress in January. On Wednesday, Wisconsin Democrat Tammy Baldwin — the first openly gay person elected to the Senate — spoke in favor of the legislation, warning Justice Clarence Thomas is pushing the Supreme Court’s conservative majority to revisit landmark rulings on the constitutional right of all people to marry.
Sen. Tammy Baldwin: “In his opinion, Justice Thomas explicitly said that the rationale used to overturn Roe v. Wade should be used to overturn cases establishing rights to contraception, same-sex consensual relations and same-sex marriage. He was essentially providing an open invitation to litigators across the country to bring their cases to the court, inevitably instilling fear among millions of Americans. The Supreme Court should not be in a position to undermine the stability of families with a stroke of the pen.”