U.S. President Joe Biden signs legislation protecting same-sex marriage
Steph Deschamps / December 14, 2022
Joe Biden signed federal same-sex marriage legislation at the White House on Tuesday. The ceremony, attended by thousands of guests, featured speeches by Democratic leaders in the House and Senate.
At the event, which featured speeches by Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer, Biden called it "a crucial step toward equality, freedom and justice, not just for some, but for all.
The federal law does not require any U.S. state to allow same-sex couples to marry, but does require states to recognize all marriages legally performed in another state. It also protects pre-existing same-sex marriages, and that includes interracial couples.
Same-sex people across the country have had the right to marry in the United States since 2015, but there is concern that the Supreme Court could reverse the decision that guarantees it. Chief Justice Clarence Thomas said this was possible after the Court had already struck down the nation's right to abortion. The Supreme Court is dominated by conservative justices.
A large majority of Americans support same-sex marriage, including in the Republican ranks, but opposition remains strong among the religious right.