Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), today issued the following statement regarding the Senate’s vote on interracial and same-sex marriage:
“Interracial and same-sex marriages are not under threat, and I don’t support reversing the federal recognition of these marriages. Of course, I believe that all married couples should be able to continue to benefit from the same federal rights and privileges that Barbara and I have enjoyed for 68 years – regardless of their race or sexual orientation. Marriage is a contract that often leads to many other contracts, and the federal government cannot void these agreements and upend the plans that couples have relied on for years.
“To be clear, there is no effort in Congress or the courts to overturn Loving v. Virginia, which recognizes interracial marriages, or Obergefell v. Hodges, which recognizes same-sex marriages. I don’t believe the Supreme Court would reverse these cases even if they were challenged, and I don’t believe it is prudent for politicians to imply otherwise in order to fabricate unnecessary discontent in our nation.
“While failing to adopt this bill would have no practical impact on the status quo, passing it would put people with certain sincere religious beliefs at greater legal risk without also providing sufficient opportunities for them to defend themselves.
“My vote against this bill is not about opposing the recognition of same-sex or interracial marriages; it’s about defending the religious liberty enshrined in our founding documents. This legislation is simply unnecessary. No one seriously thinks Obergefell is going to be overturned so we don’t need legislation. I’ve heard from multitudes of Iowans who are fearful of freedom of religion lawsuits,” Grassley said.