Senator’s bipartisan legislation ensures marriage protections for all couples and protects and respects religious liberties
Senator worked with religious groups, LGBTQ advocates, business groups, and local leaders to shape this historic, bipartisan legislation
WASHINGTON – Arizona senior Senator Kyrsten Sinema celebrated her Respect for Marriage Act becoming law at the White House signing ceremony with religious groups, LGBTQ advocates, and national and local leaders from across the political spectrum.
Arizona’s Michael Soto of the Equality and Fairness Coalition, Elder Jack Gerard from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and former Republican Senator Gordon Smith (R-Ore.) joined Sinema at the White House for the ceremony.
“Millions of Americans will now have the certainty and peace of mind that their loving marriages and religious freedoms will be protected under law. By actively listening to each other, putting aside partisanship, and finding common ground we ensured marriage and religious protections for all Americans. I’m proud to have helped lead this victory for millions of American families,” said Sinema, one of the lead negotiators and authors of the bipartisan Respect for Marriage law.
“The Respect for Marriage Act is history in the making. LGBTQ Arizonans, LGBTQ Americans, and people of faith can go to sleep tonight and celebrate the holiday season knowing that our families matter in this nation. This bill passing in the Senate shows us all that bipartisanship works, that Senator Sinema and other courageous leaders in the Senate are working for the benefit of the American people to ensure that government protects what is most important to us – our families and our faith,” said Michael Soto, Co-Founder of the Equality and Fairness Coalition.
“More than 70 percent of Americans support marriage equality. Thank you, Senator Sinema, for listening to the American people and forging a path forward on the Respect for Marriage Act,” said Neil Giuliano, President/CEO of Greater Phoenix Leadership and Former Mayor of Tempe.
“Thank you, Senator Sinema, for leading the way on the Respect for Marriage Act. Your work was the result of difficult bipartisan negotiations, and we are grateful for your courage and support to get things done for American families,” said Robert Heidt, President and CEO of Glendale Chamber of Commerce.
“My faith compels me to treat all people fairly and equally, with deep humility and respect. The Respect for Marriage Act accomplishes that by treating all loving couples, no matter who they are or who they love, equally in the eyes of the law. I am grateful for Senator Sinema’s leadership in ensuring its passage in the Senate,” said The Right Rev. Jennifer A. Reddall IV, Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Arizona.
“Thank you Senator Sinema for recognizing the worth of all marriages by leading the way to pass the Respect for Marriage Act. This historic legislation will guarantee the rights and protections afforded by legal marriage to LGBTQ and interracial couples across our great nation,” said Rev. Katie Sexton-Wood, Executive Director of Arizona Faith Network.
“Thank you Senator Sinema for your leadership in passing the Respect for Marriage Act and for recognizing the dignity and worth of all loving couples. The Respect for Marriage Act will ensure LGBTQ and interracial couples can continue to enjoy the freedoms and rights afforded by legal marriage,” said Paul Rockower, Executive Director of the Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Phoenix.
“I am grateful to Senator Sinema for leading the negotiations on the Respect for Marriage Act. It is deeply personal to me that our senior senator advocated for our family to have the same rights, benefits, responsibilities, and freedoms that other American’s hold dear,” said Angela Hughey, President & Co-Founder of ONE Community.
“The bipartisan Senate passage of the Respect for Marriage Act led by our own Senior Senator Krysten Sinema reaffirms in our society that love is love,” said Sheila Kloefkron, President and CEO of KEO Marketing.
“Grateful for the leadership of Sen. Sinema. Thank you for always working on behalf of Arizonans and the American people to find solutions that keep our community strong,” said Kim Sabow, President and CEO of Arizona Lodging and Tourism Association.
“Senator Sinema’s bipartisan leadership continues to produce results for Arizonans and American families. Grateful for her leadership to pass the Respect for Marriage Act out of the Senate and bring us one step closer to codifying fundamental rights afforded by legal marriage for LGBTQ and interracial couples,” said Kimber Lanning, CEO of Local First Arizona.
“Love is love! The historic passage of the Respect for Marriage Act in the Senate brings us one step closer to making marriage equality the law of the land. Thank you, Sen. Sinema for your leadership in getting it done!” said Lauren Bailey, CEO and Co-Founder of Upward Projects.
“Thank you, Senator Sinema, for making a positive difference in the lives of so many by supporting the Respect for Marriage Act. Your leadership on this issue gives all people the ability to protect their families and those they love,” said John Graham, Chairman and CEO of Sunbelt Holdings.
“Thank you, Senator Sinema, for your leadership in passing the Respect for Marriage Act. By passing this landmark bill, you are upholding the idea that every person is truly valued, no matter who they are or who they love,” said Steven G. Zylstra, President and CEO of Arizona Technology Council and SciTech Institute.
Sinema’s bipartisan legislation ensures same-sex couples are afforded the same protections as all marriages while protecting and respecting religious liberties.
Before Congress passed Sinema’s bipartisan Respect for Marriage Act, Sinema delivered a Senate Floor speech on this historic legislation. Click HERE to watch.
Sinema’s bipartisan Respect for Marriage Act requires the federal government to recognize a marriage between two individuals if the marriage was valid in the state it was performed. Additionally, Sinema’s bipartisan legislation guarantees that valid marriages between two individuals are given full faith and credit, regardless of the couple’s sex, race, ethnicity, or national origin. The bipartisan Respect for Marriage Act protects all religious liberty and conscience protections available under the Constitution or federal law. Click HERE for a one-page summary of Sinema’s bill and HERE for the full text.
Sinema partnered with U.S. Senators Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.), Susan Collins (R-Maine), Rob Portman (R-Ohio), and Thom Tillis (R-N.C.) to earn strong bipartisan support for the Respect for Marriage Act. Sinema built a diverse and inclusive coalition of religious groups – notably, The Jesus Christ Church of Latter Day Saints – business groups, LGBTQ advocates, and other partners to earn support.
In 2006, Sinema led the effort to successfully defeat Proposition 107, which would have banned same-sex marriages in Arizona and negatively impacted unmarried couples, common law marriages, and domestic partnerships. This was the first successful defeat of a ballot proposition involving LGBTQ rights in the nation.