The U.S. Senate on Wednesday voted to advance a bill on federal recognition of same-sex marriage.
All 50 Democrats and 12 Republican senators voted to advance the bill, allowing for debate to start on the measure and moving the legislation closer to a final vote.
Related: Gay Minister Says Bible Must Yield To Same-Sex 'Marriage'
“Yesterday's vote was a vindication that it was well worth the wait.,” Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) said on the Senate floor Thursday morning. “While nothing was inevitable about the result, I never lost faith that deep down enough of our colleagues would understand how important it was to get this bill done. I'm glad that that faith has now been justified. While some may want to delay passage, while some may want to delay, delay this process. Make no mistake, there's no stopping this bill from final passage.”
Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) discussed his vote against the measure in a press release.
“I voted against the motion to proceed to the ‘Respect for Marriage Act’ because the religious liberty protections were severely anemic and largely illusory. While I respect the efforts and emotions surrounding this issue, the bill does not simply codify Obergefell as its proponents claim. And despite the proposed amendment from Senators Collins and Baldwin, the religious-liberty protections are woefully insufficient. Religious Americans will be subject to potentially ruinous litigation, while the tax-exempt status of certain charitable organizations, educational institutions, and non-profits will be threatened,” Lee said.
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