Not that long ago, majorities in both political parties believed that marriage was the union of one man and one woman. In 1996, when Congress passed DOMA, the Defense of Marriage Act, only one Republican voted against it.
In 2013, the Supreme Court, in its Windsor decision, struck down DOMA’s definition of marriage. And in 2015, in Obergefell v. Hodges, the Court ruled that states must recognize same-sex marriages performed in other states. The 5-4 Obergefell decision not only finished off DOMA, it also wiped away constitutional amendments passed by 29 states, as well as 35 state laws.
The shift among politicians and the public has been breathtaking, with polls showing two-thirds of the country currently supporting same-sex marriage.
But marriage is God’s idea and its definition is not ours to change. Conservative Republicans made certain clear language condemning the Supreme Court’s Windsor and Obergefell rulings was placed in the party’s 2016 and 2020 platforms. Family Research Council’s Tony Perkins, who led the effort, says “the issue of marriage is non-negotiable.”
Now the Left has seized on the suggestion in Justice Clarence Thomas’s Dobbs concurrence that Obergefell and certain other decisions could be reconsidered based on arguments used to overturn Roe…
So, House Democrats quickly passed the Respect for Marriage Act, to repeal DOMA — it’s still on the books. Their effort to force Republicans to take uncomfortable positions ahead of the midterm elections bore fruit in this case. This bill, codifying same-sex marriage, drew forty-seven Republican votes.
In a piece in the Washington Standard, FRC’s David Clossen decries ”the lack of a robust defense of marriage” during the debate. On the Senate side, too many Republicans have been non-committal or blasted the bill as a diversionary waste of time. Mr. Clossen observes that many “see the issue as settled.”
As Tony Perkins reminds us, “the truth hasn’t changed.”
If we really respect marriage, we should defend it.