Thank You, Mr. President

At today's press briefing, White House spokesman Jay Carney told reporters that President Obama is putting his support behind the Respect for Marriage Act, the bill introduced in the Senate by Senators Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Patrick Leahy (D-VT), and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), which would repeal the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), the legislation which, among other things, prohibits the federal government from recognizing same-sex marriage.
The president has "long called for a legislative appeal for the so-called Defense of Marriage Act, which continues to have a real impact on families," White House spokesman Jay Carney told reporters at Tuesday's briefing. He said the president "is proud" to support the Respect For Marriage Act, "which would take the Defense of Marriage Act off the books for once and for all."
I don't know what "supporting" the Respect for Marriage Act will mean, if anything, beyond sending Carney out there to say the president supports it, but even if it's just that, that's an important follow-up to the administration having announced in February that it would no longer defend the constitutionality of DOMA in court.

(As an aside, when I say—over and over—that I want Obama to publicly give a shit about the national reproductive rights battle being waged, and people say, "Well, what do you expect him to do?" the answer is that I expect THIS. I expect him to use his bully pulpit to clearly state what side he's on. And here is evidence that he does it, when it matters to him, either personally or politically.)
On Wednesday the Senate Judiciary Committee will hold a hearing on the new bill, which would repeal all three sections of DOMA -- which federally defined marriage as a union between a man and a woman -- including section 1, which is the name; section 2, which instructs states not to recognize same-sex marriages performed in other states; and section 3, which prohibits the federal government from recognizing legally performed same-sex marriages.

Representatives from both pro- and anti-gay marriage groups will testify before the panel.
Of course they will, because a hearing on same-sex marriage wouldn't be complete without the American Family Values Children Christian Liberty Freedom Patriot Association Foundation Organization dragging a metric fuckton of dinosaur scat into the room to stink up the proceedings.


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