For Immediate Release Wednesday, June 26, 2013
The Libertarian Party applauds the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision today to strike the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), a federal law that discriminates against non-heterosexual marriages.
The Libertarian Party has supported marriage equality since its founding in 1971.
“The Republican Party has never supported marriage equality,” said Laura Delhomme, 2013 Libertarian candidate for delegate in Virginia. “Democrats, despite their alleged support of civil liberties, only added a reference to same-sex marriage to their party platform in 2012 — when it became politically convenient.”
DOMA was pushed through by a GOP-led Congress and signed by a Democratic president.
“This is a landmark victory for personal freedom,” said Geoffrey J. Neale, chair of the Libertarian National Committee. “The Democrats and Republicans who have advanced, defended, and let stand government intrusion into the private contracts and choices of consenting adults will be remembered for their inhumanity on this issue.”
Ending DOMA means that the federal government will recognize the legal marriages of same-sex couples in states that recognize marriage equality. This is a good first step toward ending government discrimination that has affected millions of Americans.
Libertarian candidates have long rallied for marriage equality. This year, Robert Sarvis, Libertarian Party of Virginia candidate for governor, along with Delhomme and several other candidates for legislature, have vowed to press for recognition of same-sex marriage in Virginia.
Libertarian candidates in New Jersey, the only other state that is holding legislative races this year, are also calling for marriage equality.
“Same-sex couples are denied the right to marry because the governor vetoed the marriage equality bill that would have guaranteed their civil rights,” said Ken Kaplan, Libertarian for governor in New Jersey. “I will sign such a bill.”
The Libertarian Party platform states that “Sexual orientation, preference, gender, or gender identity should have no impact on the government’s treatment of individuals, such as in current marriage, child custody, adoption, immigration or military service laws.”
A recent poll from ABC News/Washington Post shows that 58 percent of Americans support marriage equality, a rapid change from just a decade ago, when only 39 percent supported it. Americans are coming around to the Libertarian view that big government does not belong in our lives, whether it’s our bedrooms or our wallets.