Pelosi backs marriage equality for official DNC platform

By Stephen C. Webster
Wednesday, February 15, 2012 16:16 EDT
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Elizabeth Warren (left) with House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi on July 20, 2011. Via Flickr commons.
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House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) has thrown her support to adding a call for marriage equality to the official platform of the Democratic National Convention (DNC), according to a Washington, D.C. LGBT publication.

Pelosi, whose constituency includes San Francisco, reportedly broke the news exclusively to Metro Weekly shortly after the group Freedom to Marry launched a campaign calling on Democrats to adopt marriage equality as one of their “official” issues.

The group has proposed a very specific statement to add to the DNC’s platform, which reads: “We support the full inclusion of all families in the life of our nation, with equal respect, responsibilities, and protections under the law, including the freedom to marry. Government has no business putting barriers in the path of people seeking to care for their family members, particularly in challenging economic times. We support the Respect for Marriage Act and the overturning of the federal so-called Defense of Marriage Act, and oppose discriminatory constitutional amendments and other attempts to deny the freedom to marry to loving and committed same-sex couples.”

Pelosi’s office reportedly told Metro Weekly that she “supports this language.”

“Freedom to Marry is proud to have Leader Pelosi joining our call to put the Democratic Party squarely on record in support of the freedom to marry as part of the national platform,” the group’s president, Evan Wolfson, told Metro Weekly. “A wide majority of Democrats and Independents support the freedom to marry, and standing up for all families is not just the right thing to do, it’s the right to do politically.”

It’s not clear whether the party will actually adopt marriage equality on its official platform, as President Barack Obama continues to say he is opposed to fully legalizing same sex marriage, but supports giving equal rights to gays and lesbian couples. However, Obama also picked Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL) to lead the DNC in 2011, and she’s a strong proponent of marriage equality.

The current DNC platform supports “equal responsibilities, benefits and protections” for same sex couples, but it does not specifically address marriage. The party’s national convention will be held in Sept.

Stephen C. Webster
Stephen C. Webster
Stephen C. Webster is the senior editor of Raw Story, and is based out of Austin, Texas. He previously worked as the associate editor of The Lone Star Iconoclast in Crawford, Texas, where he covered state politics and the peace movement’s resurgence at the start of the Iraq war. Webster has also contributed to publications such as True/Slant, Austin Monthly, The Dallas Business Journal, The Dallas Morning News, Fort Worth Weekly, The News Connection and others. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenCWebster.
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