Meet the Democrats Who Voted for the Defense of Marriage Act


The Supreme Court ruled yesterday that Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act is unconstitutional. With the ruling, same-sex couples that are legally married by a state will now be able to receive federal marriage benefits.

Some prominent Democrats have lauded this movement towards more equal treatment. In response to the ruling, Bill Clinton tweeted that he is "grateful to all who fought tirelessly for this day." He also released an official statement condemning the discriminatory nature of DOMA. What Clinton failed to mention was that he signed the act into law.

He wasn't alone in his silence. Other leading Democrats who supported it include Vice President Joe Biden, who voted for DOMA as a senator. Sen. Harry Reid (Nev.), who said, "The idea that allowing two loving, committed people to marry would have a negative impact on anyone else, or on our nation as a whole, has always struck me as absurd," also forgot to note that he voted for DOMA. Sen. Chuck Schumer (N.Y.) released a statement praising the forward thinking of the Supreme Court. "The march towards equality… moved forward again today… The Supreme Court did the right thing here and helps us understand that the march to equality in America is unstoppable." He made no mention of the fact that he, too, voted for the act and against "the march to equality." Sen. Bob Menendez (N.J.) patted himself on the back: "As a member of Congress who signed the amicus brief urging this decision [to repeal DOMA], I am thrilled that the Supreme Court took a strong stand for marriage equality." Menendez saw no need to clarify that this was only after he voted for DOMA in the first place. Sen. Tom Harkin (Iowa) voiced his support yesterday saying, "I am glad that the court recognized that all American families deserve the same legal protections," but made no mention of why his point of view flipped.

Here are the Democratic senators and House members still in office who voted for DOMA:


Baucus, Max (Mont.)

Biden, Joe (Del.) (Now Vice President)

Harkin, Tom (Iowa)

Leahy, Patrick (Vt.)

Levin, Carl (Mich.)

Mikulski, Barbara (Md.)

Murray, Patty (Wash.)

Reid, Harry (Nev.)

Rockefeller, Jay (W. Va.)

House of Representatives

Hilliard, Earl (Ala.)

Pastor, Ed (Ariz.)

DeLauro, Rosa (Conn.)

Brown, Corrine (Fla.)

Bishop, Sanford (Fla.)

Rush, Bobby (Ill.)

Durbin, Richard (Ill.) (now senator)

Visclosky, Peter (Ill.)

Neal, Richard (Mass.)

Cardin, Benjamin (Md.) (now senator)

Hoyer, Steny (Md.)

Cummings, Elijah (Md.)

Levin, Sander (Mich.)

Dingell, John (Mich.)

Peterson, Collin (Minn.)

Andrews, Rob (N.J.)

Menéndez, Bob (N.J.) (now senator)

Schumer, Charles (N.Y.) (now senator)

Lowey, Nita (N.Y.)

Kaptur, Marcy (Ohio)

Blumenauer, Earl (Ore.)

Doyle, Mike (Penn.)

Reed, John (R.I.) (now senator)

Clyburn, Jim (S.C.)

Johnson, Tim (S.D.) (now senator)

Hall, Ralph (Texas)

Doggett, Lloyd (Texas)

Green, Gene (Texas)

Johnson, Eddie (Texas)

Rahall, Nick (W. Va.)