WASHINGTON, April 28 – As the Supreme Court today took up cases on gay marriage, Sen. Bernie Sanders said gay Americans in all states deserve the right to wed.
“Of course all citizens deserve equal rights,” Sanders said. “It’s time for the Supreme Court to catch up to the American people and legalize gay marriage.”
Vermont was a pioneer in enacting laws giving gay couples legal recognition, beginning with a history-making statute in 2000 permitting civil unions and the nation’s first marriage law passed without a court order in 2009. Gay marriage is now legal in 36 states.
Justices also agreed to decide by the end of their term this June whether states that do not permit same-sex weddings must recognize couples legally married in other states.
Sanders has a long record of support for the right of gays to marry. In the House, he voted in 1996 against the so-called Defense of Marriage Act, which barred federal recognition of gay marriages. The Supreme Court in 2013 struck down part of that law as unconstitutional.
In Vermont, Sanders supported the state’s 2000 civil unions law and the 2009 law legalizing gay marriage.