The Advocate is reporting that the "Respect for Marriage Act" - which would repeal the so-called "Defense of Marriage Act" - has officially picked up its first Republican cosponsor: Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen of Florida.
“I voted against the constitutional amendment defining marriage [in 2006] so I’m pleased to cosponsor the repeal of DOMA and work with my colleagues on marriage equality,” said Ros-Lehtinen, who represents Florida’s 18th district, which includes South Beach, most sections of Miami, and the Florida Keys.Ros-Lehtinen is also the only Republican member of the LGBT Equality Caucus and, according to the Advocate, has cosponsored many equal rights bills.
With Ros-Lehtinen's cosponsorship, DOMA repeal now has 125 cosponsors in the House, breaking another new record. The same bill has a record 30 Senate cosponsors, as well.
It's very encouraging to see a Republican cosponsor the repeal of a form of institutionalized discrimination that most of the GOP has been all too happy to defend. I hope that more Republicans will break away from their leadership and understand the importance of standing up for all people. Equal rights is not a partisan issue, and Ros-Lehtinen's support for LGBT equality is proof of that.