The Huffington Post reports:
Despite the growing number of states allowing gay marriage, one Republican congressman filed legislation Thursday to limit the federal government’s power to recognize gay marriages in states. Rep. Randy Weber (R-Texas) introduced the “State Marriage Defense Act Of 2014,” which would require federal agencies to look into a person’s “legal residence” when determining marital status and how federal law would be applied. The bill would have the effect of reintroducing for gay couples some aspects of the federal Defense of Marriage Act, which defined marriage as between one man and one woman until the Supreme Court declared it unconstitutional in June. The bill also would undercut a Treasury Department decision in August requiring gay married couples in all states to be treated as married for federal tax purposes; Weber’s bill would force the federal government to treat such couples differently in states that don’t recognize gay marriage. In addition, the Social Security Administration announced in December that it would pay survivor benefits to members of gay marriages.
Since the bill’s introduction, 27 GOP members of the House have signed on as co-sponsors. The list so far is a cavalcade of crackpottery: Michele Bachmann, Louis Gohmert, John Fleming, etc. Eleven of the 27 co-sponsors are from Texas. Weber, a freshman rep and former air conditioner repairman, has previously only authored one failed House resolution. Therefore I suspect his bill was actually written by the Family Research Council, who jointly announced its introduction yesterday with an appearance by Weber on Tony Perkins’ national radio show.
It’s a blatant assault on equality, and will go a long ways to cement the party’s reputation as the party of bigots, religious zealots, and small minded people.