Dems Include Marriage Equality in Party Platform

Outgoing Rep. Frank: It was a “Unanimous Decision”

The Washington Blade has reported that the 2012 Democratic Party platform will include a plank supporting marriage equality for gay and lesbian couples.

Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.), who is retiring as the highest-ranking openly gay member of Congress this year, told reporter Chris Johnson that the 15-person drafting committee made a “unanimous decision” to include the plank.

A Democratic National Committee staffer revealed that the platform’s language also opposes the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and supports passage of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act.

Witnesses from a range of LGBT advocacy groups testified in favor of the pro-gay platform at a national meeting in Minneapolis last weekend. They included Freedom to Marry’s national campaign director Marc Solomon, Servicemembers Legal Defense Network client Chief Warrant Officer Charlie Morgan, and Aaron Zellhoefer, a National Stonewall Democrats representative and delegate to the Democratic National Convention.

In contrast to the DNC’s inclusive language, the Republican Party platform for 2012 is likely to reject measures ensuring LGBT equality. The 2008 GOP platform supported a constitutional amendment for the definition of marriage as a union one man and one woman, and supported states’ rights to “affirm traditional marriage.”

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