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Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen signs on as first GOP sponsor of Respect for Marriage Act

WASHINGTON – Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Florida) on Friday became the first Republican member of Congress to co-sponsor the Respect for Marriage Act.

The Florida congresswoman is a longtime ally of the LGBT community.

“I’m pleased to join the Log Cabin Republicans in our fight for marriage equality. I co-sponsored the repeal of DOMA because I firmly believe that equality is enshrined in our Constitution and in our great democracy,” Ros-Lehtinen said.

Log Cabin Republicans thanked Ros-Lehtinen for her support.

“Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen has long been on the frontlines in fighting for human dignity at home and abroad. As a founding member of the House LGBT Equality Caucus she has been a reliable ally and leader time and again on legislation to secure freedom and fairness for all Americans. Log Cabin Republicans are grateful that she has once again stepped forward as an inclusive leader by co-sponsoring the Respect for Marriage Act,” said R. Clarke Cooper, Log Cabin Republicans executive director.

“Marriage is a fundamental right of all Americans. The so-called Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) is an offense to the core conservative principles of liberty and federalism. It has been repudiated by its author, former Congressman Bob Barr (R-GA), and is rejected by a growing majority of Americans. It is time that our law respected all marriages. There is much work to be done to make that dream a reality, but with Congresswoman Ros-Lehtinen’s leadership, marriage equality is on the horizon.”

Ros-Lehtinen spoke Tuesday night at the Log Cabin Republicans’ Spirit of Lincoln Awards in D.C.