Senator Broach

Flannery Peters Broach has worked for the people since she was elected to the New York state legislature in 1995. Graduating from Brown in 1990, Senator Broach served five years as a state representative and was elected to a full term in the U.S. Senate in 2008. She is currently the chair of the Senate Environment & Public Works committee. Senator Broach holds strong to her liberal beginning and fights tirelessly against discrimination- on the basis of race, disability, age, ethnicity, religion, nationality, sexual orientation, and gender identity- in society, the workplace, and schools across the nation. She is a consistent supporter of ENDA (Employment Non-Discrimination Act) and supported the Lily Ledbetter Fair Pay Act. A strong voice for the New York LGBTQ community, Senator Broach is currently battling the Defense of Marriage act.

BILL DRAFT:
Title: Respect of Marriage Act (ROMA) *
Purpose: This bill would, to wit, overturn a ruling that the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) set: that marriages performed in other states do not have to be legally recognized by other states. While it would not overturn the federal government’s legal definition of marriage- as between a man and a woman- it would help extend marriage benefits for same-sex couples across America.
Findings: DOMA is a direct turn from Article IV, section I of the Constitution, which states that “Full Faith and Credit shall be given in each State to the public Acts, Records, and judicial Proceedings of every other State”. By voting for ROMA, same-sex couples regain more than 1000 federal rights and protections lost with DOMA.
The Obama administration promised certain goals with the LGBTQ community- namely, the overturning of DADT (Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell) and DOMA. These promises have only been fulfilled halfway, and ROMA seeks to close one of the final disparities between the government and the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer communities.
Eligibility: National level- states must acknowledge marriages legally performed in other states.


Why civil unions are not enough:
-often, people leave no choice- the options are "divorced, widowed, single, or married"
-not the same as being married- leave people feeling unsecure
-taxes are much more difficult to fill out
-an obvious marker of homosexuality- if someone asks if you're married you practically have to come out




Ms. Broach of New York (for herself, Senator Johnson, Senator Gelderman, Senator Schell, Senator Knowles, and Senator Miller) introduced the following bill.

A Bill
to repeal the Defense of Marriage Act and ensure federal recognition of marriages performed in any state.

Section 1: Short Title
This Act may be cited as the Respect of Marriage Act ,or ROMA.

Section 2: Findings
1. Violation of the Constitution
i. The Defense of Marriage Act, or DOMA, is found to be in direct violation of Article IV, section I of the Constitution, which states that "Full Faith and Credit shall be given in each State to the public Acts, Records, and judicial Proceedings of every other State".
ii. DOMA is found to exceed congressional authority in violation of the Tenth Amendment to the United States Constitution.

2. Same-sex couple federal rights and protections
i. Under ROMA, same-sex couples regain more than 1000 federal rights and protections lost under DOMA.

3. Presidential promises
i. In President Obama's political platform while campaigning, certain goals were promised to the LGBTQ community, including the overturning of DOMA and the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy.
ii. These goals have only been fulfilled partly.

4. Violation of clauses
i. DOMA is found to violate the Equal Protection clause.
ii. DOMA is found to violate the due process clause.

Section 3: Amendment/Purpose
Section 7 of title 1 of the United States Code is amended to read as follows:
Sec. 7. Marriage
  1. For any Federal law in which marriage is a factor, an individual shall be considered married under Federal law if the marriage in question was considered legal and valid in the state in which the marriage took place.
  2. For this bill, the definition of State will be any and all of the fifty states of the United States of America, all Native American tribes, and Washington District of Colombia.