Senators Joe Donnelly and Heidi Heitkamp support the freedom to marry
April 05, 2013
This morning, two additional Senators - Sen. Joe Donnelly (D-IN) and Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND) announced support for the freedom to marry.
Sen. Donnelly announced his support on Facebook today. He wrote:
In recent years, our country has been involved in an important discussion on the issue of marriage equality. While serving in the House of Representatives, I had the opportunity to act on a core belief of mine: we are a stronger country when we draw on the strengths of all Americans. I voted to repeal ‘don't ask, don't tell' and was an original supporter of the bill that would make it illegal to discriminate against someone in the workplace because of their sexual orientation. It is also for that reason that I oppose amending either Indiana's or our nation's constitution to enshrine in those documents an ‘us' and a ‘them,' instead of a ‘we.' With the recent Supreme Court arguments and accompanying public discussion of same-sex marriage, I have been thinking about my past positions and votes. In doing so, I have concluded that the right thing to do is to support marriage equality for all
The Associated Press reported Sen. Heitkamp's announcement today. According to the AP:
In a statement, the freshman Democratic senator says that after much personal reflection she's concluded that the federal government shouldn't discriminate against "people who want to make lifelong, loving commitments to each other."
Heitkamp says she views the ability of anyone to marry as "a logical extension of this belief."
While the makeup of families is changing, she says the importance of family is enduring.
The support from Sen. Donnelly and Sen. Heitkamp brings the total number of U.S. Senators who support the freedom to marry to 53. Their public embrace of the freedom to marry follows similar statements of support from eleven Senators in the past two weeks. Look at statements from 9 Democratic Senators HERE, Sen. Mark Kirk (R-IL), and Sen. Bill Nelson (D-FL).