Wisconsin Congresswoman Tammy Baldwin has said she believes the GOP is divided on the issue of gay rights.

The openly gay Democrat made her remarks during a panel discussion hosted by eQualityGiving.org.

Baldwin said the fact that House Speaker John Boehner decided against taking a floor vote on whether to defend the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which bans federal recognition of the marriages of gay and lesbian couples, now that President Barack Obama won't, demonstrates that the GOP is divided on the issue.

“They had two paths they could take: They could bring a resolution to the floor directing the general counsel of the House to defend the constitutionality of DOMA, or they could do what they did do which was convene the five top leaders of the House – the three Republicans and two Democrats – and vote to direct the general counsel to defend the constitutionality of DOMA.”

Massachusetts Representative Barney Frank “pointed out that the significance of their choosing the latter course of action was that they didn't want their members on record because it would probably have shown that there was more support for repealing DOMA today than there was the last time a roll call vote was taken about this, but also probably this happened because they were hearing more and more from members of the Republican party who don't want to take these socially divisive votes anymore.”

“I think there's less likelihood today that we will see damaging anti-equality legislation making it through the House than there was the last time Republicans had control of the House,” she added.

A Washington Post-ABC News poll released Friday showed a slim majority (53%) of Americans support gay marriage. Opponents quickly labeled the poll biased.

Democrats on Wednesday introduced bills that would repeal DOMA.