The House of Representatives approved a bill on Tuesday protecting same-sex marriage on a federal level. This comes amid fears of the possibility that the supreme court can reverse the recognition of such unions.
By a vote of 267 to 157, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Respect for Marriage act. However, its future remains uncertain when it comes to the Senate.
Forty-seven Republicans joined Democratic lawmakers in voting for the said measure, which was lauded on the House floor when approved.
While the House is Democrat-controlled, the party only has 50 seats in the 100-member Senate. Furthermore, they also need ten votes from the Republican party to bring this bill to the floor.
The said act would force states across the country to recognize valid same-sex marriages performed in another state. This would protect same-sex unions and interracial marriages alike.
The said bill also repeals the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act, overriding the latter’s definition of marriage as a union between a man and a woman.
In a 5-4 ruling in 2013, the Supreme Court struck down a portion of the 1996 act that denied federal benefits to same-sex married couples. However, the said law remained on the books.
“The bipartisan Respect for Marriage Act will enshrine and protect marriage equality and make sure legal, same-sex, and interracial marriages are recognized,” Senator Tammy Baldwin said.