A bill which would extend some benefits
to the gay partners of federal employees cleared a Senate panel on
The Senate Homeland Security and
Government Affairs Committee approved the Domestic Partnership
Benefits and Obligations Act on a voice vote.
Senators Joe Lieberman of Connecticut
and Susan Collins of Maine reintroduced the measure late last year.
“Correcting this situation that
allows for unequal treatment among federal workers not only fixes a
fundamental unfairness in the current system, it will help the
federal government recruit and retain talented employees who might
otherwise reject federal service because … they can get fairer
benefits packages from other private or public sector employers,”
Lieberman is quoted as saying by POLITICO.com
in his opening remarks.
“It's just a matter of making the
federal government's benefits structure comparable of those of large
employers,” Collins said.
Lieberman and Collins have backed the
measure in the past two Congresses.
Wisconsin Rep. Tammy Baldwin has
introduced the House version of the bill. A committee hearing in the
Republican-controlled House, however, does not appear to be in the