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Richard Hanna becomes 2nd GOP House member, after Ros-Lehtinen, to support repeal of DOMA

From Freedom to Marry:

New York – Congressman Richard Hanna (R-NY) announced his support today for the Respect for Marriage Act (HR 1116), the bill to repeal the so-called Defense of Marriage Act and end federal marriage discrimination against same-sex couples. He is the 159th cosponsor of the bill, and the second Republican cosponsor.

“I respect the deeply held beliefs on both sides of this issue,” Hanna said in a statement. “The simple fact remains that the federal government has a responsibility to ensure all legally married couples are treated equally under federal law – and this bill would achieve that proper standard.”

Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL) became the first Republican cosponsor of the Respect for Marriage Act in 2011. Prominent Republicans who have expressed broad support for the freedom to marry include former Vice President Dick Cheney, former First Lady Laura Bush and her daughter Barbara Bush, former RNC chairman Ken Mehlman, and former Secretary of State Colin Powell. Young Conservatives for the Freedom to Marry, which launched in July, elevates the voices of the rapidly growing number of Republicans, libertarians, and other conservatives across the country who support marriage.

Jo Deutsch, federal director of Freedom to Marry, said: “Congressman Hanna is showing true leadership today by cosponsoring this landmark bill to put an end to the federal government's exclusion of same-sex couples from marriage. He knows how critical it is to his constituents -- and all Americans --- that every married couple, gay or straight, has the same protections under the law. We urge other Congressional Republicans to stand on the right side of history and join Congressman Hanna in supporting the Respect for Marriage Act.”

Freedom to Marry's federal program works to repeal the so-called Defense of Marriage Act and make the case for marriage to government officials, opinion leaders, and political operatives in Washington, DC. Freedom to Marry and HRC lead the Respect for Marriage Coalition, a diverse group of 85 organizations working together to repeal DOMA.

From Log Cabin Republicans:

GOP Congressman Richard Hanna Wants Federal Respect for New York Marriages, Signs on to DOMA Repeal

(Washington, DC) – Today Congressman Richard Hanna (R-NY) became the second Republican to sign on as a cosponsor of the Respect of Marriage Act to repeal the so-called Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). DOMA currently prohibits federal recognition of legally married same-sex couples, in flagrant violation of the principles of federalism and equal protection under the law.

"Congressman Richard Hanna has been a staunch ally for the LGBT community since arriving in Congress, and his co-sponsorship of DOMA repeal sends a powerful message that the federal government has no business disrespecting decisions by states like New York to protect gay and lesbian families,” said Log Cabin Republicans Executive Director R. Clarke Cooper. “Congressman Hanna's public support for the Respect for Marriage Act will embolden fellow Republicans who value the Constitution's design for limited government and respect for individual liberty. Especially after the last election, many in our party are finally recognizing that we have to deal with the reality of committed same-sex partnerships, and that the federal government has a responsibility to ensure all legally married couples are treated equally under federal law. Repealing DOMA is a crucial step in the right direction, and Richard Hanna, as a champion of true conservative principles, is helping to lead the way."

Log Cabin Republicans were proud to endorse Richard Hanna for election in both 2010 and 2012, and awarded the congressman with the organization’s highest honor, the Spirit of Lincoln Award, in September 2011. As a freshman member of Congress, Hanna joined the House LGBT Equality Caucus and cosponsored several other pieces of pro-equality legislation, including the Employment Nondiscrimination Act (ENDA), the Safe Schools Improvement Act, and the Tax Parity for Health Plan Beneficiaries Act, which would equalize tax treatment for health benefits provided to domestic partners by employers.

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