President Obama endorses a new congressional proposal to repeal the Defense of Marriage Act, which basically defines marriage as between a man and a woman. This year, the administration said it would no longer defend the Defense of Marriage Act in federal court.
White House spokesman Jay Carney said: The president has long called for a legislative repeal of the so-called Defense of Marriage Act, which continues to have a real impact on the lives of real people, our families, friends and neighbors.
He is proud to support the Respect for Marriage Act, introduced by Sen. (Dianne) Feinstein and
Congressman (Jerrold) Nadler, which would take DOMA off the books once and for all.
This legislation would uphold the principle that the federal government should not deny gay and lesbian couples the same rights and legal protections as straight couples.
Proponents of same-sex marriage hope a Senate committee hearing Wednesday will mark the beginning of the end for a 15-year-old law that defines marriage as between a man and a woman.
Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California says she is under no illusion that Congress will act this year to repeal the Defense of Marriage Act. The Democratic lawmaker views the Senate Judiciary Committee's first hearing on the law as an important first step.