DC – Congressman Joe Kennedy today announced that he is an original co-sponsor of legislation to fully repeal the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). Kennedy joins 160 members of the House and 41 members of the Senate in re-introducing the Respect for Marriage Act that would eliminate the law entirely. While the Supreme Court struck down Section 3 of DOMA yesterday, other sections of the law remain in place.


“For over fifteen years the Defense of Marriage Act has codified discrimination and excused inequality,” said Congressman Kennedy. “While the Supreme Court’s ruling on Section 3 yesterday was an enormous victory, continuing to keep this law on our books in any form does not befit a country built on justice for all.”


In particular, Section 2 of DOMA remains untouched by yesterday’s ruling.  Section 2 gives states the ability to disregard marriages performed in other states, setting aside the “full faith and credit” clause of the constitution and creating a patchwork of inequality for rights that should be consistent across our nation.


Congressman Kennedy is a member of the House Equality Caucus.  He is a co-sponsor of the Employee Non-Discrimination Act, which would prohibit employment discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity, and the Uniting American Families Act,  which would allow same-sex couples to sponsor their partners for the purposes of immigration visas.