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Democratic platform draft language on marriage equality, ENDA revealed

Democratic platform draft language on marriage equality, ENDA revealed

The draft language in the Democratic Party platform endorsing marriage equality has been revealed and shown to say “we support marriage equality” is set to become a tenet of the party’s beliefs.

In addition to endorsing marriage equality, the language also calls for repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act and urges passage of DOMA repeal legislation known as the Respect for Marriage Act. Notably, the language explicitly backs religious freedom for marriage, saying religions should “decide how to administer marriage as a religious sacrament without government interference.”

Buzzfeed was first to make the language public ahead of the scheduled meeting of the full platform committee in Detroit. The Washington Blade confirmed the language is accurate through two sources familiar with the drafting process.

The full language reads:

“We support the right of all families to have equal respect, responsibilities, and protections under the law. We support marriage equality and support the movement to secure equal treatment under law for same-sex couples. We also support the freedom of churches and religious entities to decide how to administer marriage as a religious sacrament without government interference.”

“We oppose discriminatory federal and state constitutional amendments and other attempts to deny equal protection of the laws to committed same-sex couples who seek the same respect and responsibilities as other married couples. We support the full repeal of the so-called Defense of Marriage Act and the passage of the Respect for Marriage Act.”

This weekend in Detroit, the full platform committee will discuss the draft platform and have the opportunity to submit proposed amendments, which need to be approved by a majority of the committee voting and present. The platform will then be presented to convention delegates Charlotte, N.C., for the Democratic National Convention.

Chad Griffin, president of the Human Rights Campaign, urged the committee to adopt the plank pertaining to marriage equality as part of the Democratic platform.

“Marriage equality has quickly become a mainstream American value and it’s a sign of the times that the Democratic Party has included language affirming the ability of gays and lesbians to marry in its draft platform,” Griffin said. “We encourage the Platform Committee and the delegates to the convention to adopt this strong statement that all loving and committed American families deserve equal treatment.”

Additional LGBT platform draft language has been revealed stating the Democratic Party’s commitment to passage of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act. The language also touts previous accomplishments, such as “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” repeal and passage of the hate crimes protections law.

As with the marriage language, the additional LGBT language was first reported by Buzzfeed. The Washington Blade confirmed with a source familiar with the platform drafting process that the language is accurate.

“We know that putting America back to work is job one, and we are committed to ensuring Americans do not face employment discrimination. We support the Employment Non-Discrimination Act because people should not be fired based on their sexual orientation or gender identity.”

“President Obama and the Democratic Party are committed to ensuring all Americans are treated fairly. This administration hosted the first-ever White House Conference on Bullying Prevention and we must continue our work to prevent vicious bullying of young people and support LGBT youth. The President’s record, from ending ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ in full cooperation with our military leadership, to passing the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act, to ensuring same-sex couples can visit each other in the hospital, reflects Democrats’ belief that all Americans deserve the same chance to pursue happiness, earn a living, be safe in their communities, serve their country, and take care of the ones they love.”

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