House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D) — a long time supporter of the LGBT community and proponent of marriage equality — is calling on the Democratic party to include marriage rights for gays and lesbians in its 2012 party platform, Metro Weekly’s Chris Geidner reports. Pelosi’s backing comes in response to Freedom to Marry’s new ‘Say I Do’ campaign, which is pushing Democrats to become the first major political party to adopt the policy:
The proposed plank states: “We support the full inclusion of all families in the life of our nation, with equal respect, responsibilities, and protections under the law, including the freedom to marry. Government has no business putting barriers in the path of people seeking to care for their family members, particularly in challenging economic times. We support the Respect for Marriage Act and the overturning of the federal so-called Defense of Marriage Act, and oppose discriminatory constitutional amendments and other attempts to deny the freedom to marry to loving and committed same-sex couples.”
Pelosi spokesman Drew Hammill tells Metro Weekly, “Leader Pelosi supports this language.”
The Democrats’ 2008 platform opposed the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which the Obama administration is no longer defending in court, but took no position on marriage equality. Obama has said that he is still “evolving” on the issue, even as a growing number of Democratic lawmakers now support marriage. At least 91 Democrats in the House, including Democratic National Committee chair Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL), and 23 senators back same-sex marriage. Twelve Democratic governors (and one Independent, Gov. Lincoln Chafee of Rhode Island) also favor full marriage rights.