Yesterday, Senators Ted Cruz (R-Tx.) and Mike Lee (R-Utah) introduced a new bill in the Senate, the State Marriage Defense Act (S 2024). The bill is substantively similar to another introduced in the House earlier this year by Cruz's fellow Texan, Representative Randy Weber.
According to a statement published on Senator Cruz's website, the bill will "protect states from an out of control administration that is seeking to force same sex marriage upon states that define marriage as the union between one man and one woman."
In the statement, Senator Cruz explains his motivation in co-authoring the bill:
I support traditional marriage. Under President Obama, the federal government has tried to re-define marriage, and to undermine the constitutional authority of each state to define marriage consistent with the values of its citizens. The Obama Administration should not be trying to force gay marriage on all 50 states. We should respect the states, and the definition of marriage should be left to democratically elected legislatures, not dictated from Washington. This bill will safeguard the ability of states to preserve traditional marriage for its residents.
Senator Lee explained that the question of "[h]ow a state should define marriage should be left up to the citizens of each state." However, he noted that "the Obama administration finds the principles of federalism inconvenient in its effort to force states to redefine the institution of marriage."
Therefore, the bill "provides an important protection for states, respecting the right to choose for themselves how each will treat the institution of marriage under the law."
NOM commends these marriage champions in the Senate for defending the votes of many millions of citizens whose values are continually under threat of being overruled by an activist judiciary and an out of control administration.