Senator Jack Reed (D-RI) has been under mounting pressure from national and Rhode Island gay groups to support marriage equality and the repeal of DOMA. In the wake of President Obama's groundbreaking endorsement of the freedom to marry, that pressure has only intensified. While he has been a generally gay-friendly Senator, Reed has kept quiet on whether he thinks DOMA should be repealed, and he has remained opposed to marriage equality in general. From a Providence Journal article earlier today:
U.S. Sen. Jack Reed said this week that he still has not decided whether to change his longstanding opposition to gay marriage and has no timetable for making a decision.
Gay marriage backers have pressed Reed since last fall to reconsider his support for a Clinton-administration law that says no state can be required to recognize same-sex marriages sanctioned in other states.
Reed said he is still reviewing pertinent court cases, including federal appeals court rulings against the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act. But the Rhode Island Democrat could not cite a specific finding that has prompted him to reconsider his position.
Well, I don't know if it was the President's endorsement that pushed him over the edge, but Reed has now completed his "evolution." He just tweeted that he now supports marriage equality and will not only vote for the Respect for Marriage Act, but will cosponsor it.
Good news! Bravo for finally doing the right thing!
This is part of the reason so many of us have been pushing President Obama to "evolve" for so long. Now that the leader of our party has endorsed the freedom to marry, it has become harder for many Democrats to avoid the issue and to hide behind civil unions.
Equality is marching on. What a day.