Anti-gay marriage groups are blasting
Senate Democrats who on Thursday approved a bill out of committee
that would repeal the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA).
DOMA, approved in 1996, bars federal
agencies and the military from recognizing the legal marriages of gay
and lesbian couples.
Democrats on the Senate Judiciary
to approve the bill without any Republican support. Republican
members said they support DOMA because extending marriage to gay
couples would contribute
to the national debt and insisted that DOMA does not harm gay
California Senator Dianne Feinstein,
the chief sponsor of the measure in the Senate, appears to be
receiving most of the heat from groups opposed to repeal.
The National Organization for Marriage
(NOM), the nation's most vociferous opponent of gay marriage,
responded by launching an online petition campaign asking senators to
vote against the bill.
“We need you to help us draw a line
in the Senate,” NOM
President Brian Brown said in a post. “Together, we can stop
this repeal of DOMA dead in its tracks, and stop Senator Feinstein
and her liberal friends in the Senate from imposing their values on
the entire nation, but only if we act now!”
“Today, Senator Feinstein and the
other 9 Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee made a statement
that the government has no interest in the only institution that not
only unites a man and a woman with each other, but with any children
born from their union,” said William
B. May of Catholics for the Common Good in a statement.
Tony Perkins of the Christian
conservative Family Research Council (FRC) said gay marriage would
“Today the Senate Judiciary Committee
passed S.598, Sen. Dianne Feinstein's (D-CA) bill that would
completely eradicate the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and the
protections it affords taxpayers and the majority of state's voters
who have decided to define marriage as between one man and one
wrote. “Marriage is not some prize that liberals can award to
a small, vocal and already well off special interest group. …
Trying to change the definition to fit some misguided concept can
only cause harm to society.”
Despite the dire warnings, the measure
is unlikely to advance to the Senate floor and the issue is a
non-starter in the Republican-controlled House.