Colorado lawmakers react to Supreme Court declaring same-sex marriage legal

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DENVER — Colorado lawmakers reacted with statements Friday after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled same-sex marriage is legal nationwide.

Sen. Michael Bennet: “Today’s historic decision affirms one of our country’s most basic values – that every American is equal under the law and deserves the same rights as everyone else. Marriage is a fundamental right that same-sex couples deserve to enjoy, and now they will have the same rights and opportunities that the law grants to Susan and me. This is yet another milestone on the march toward full equality, and we will use this momentum to continue our work to ensure all of our laws are free from discrimination, regardless of sexual orientation. But today, we celebrate that our country is a little more equal.”

Rep. Diana DeGette: “Finally, every loving couple in the United States may choose to express their commitment in marriage and be assured of its legal benefits and responsibilities. This is a proud moment in our ongoing march towards full equality.

“I was particularly touched by Justice Kennedy’s observation about the children of same sex couples, who have borne the burden of the inequality of their parents’ relationships, observing: ‘[e]xcluding same-sex couples from marriage thus conflicts with a central premise of the right to marry. Without the recognition, stability, and predictability marriage offers, their children suffer the stigma of knowing their families are somehow lesser. They also suffer the significant material costs of being raised by unmarried parents, relegated through no fault of their own to a more difficult and uncertain family life.’

“That stigma ends now. I have proudly officiated services for same sex couples, and I have my minister’s license ready to perform more.”

Rep. Jared Polis: “The road to LGBT equality in America has not been an easy one. From the Stonewall riots in 1969, to an epidemic that killed hundreds of thousands of gay men; from a Supervisor assassinated for refusing to blend in, to a Wyoming college student beaten to death for his sexual orientation, that road has been paved with far too many tragic days.

“Today is not one of those. Today is a day to celebrate, as we’ve overcome one of our most challenging obstacles yet.

“With today’s decision, the Court ruled in no uncertain terms that the bonds of love, commitment, and responsibility that all our families share exist without regard to gender and deserve the dignity of being recognized under the law.

“Despite this milestone, however, the battle for LGBT rights is not over. Marriage equality doesn’t mean that a gay employee can’t still be fired from his job when his boss finds out, or that a transgender individual can’t still be denied housing. So while we recognize the momentous victory that we achieved today, we can’t lose sight of our larger goal – a world in which being lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender doesn’t subject a person to discrimination and prejudice.”

Rep. Ed Perlmutter: “Today is a historic day for marriage equality and equal rights.  Every person now has the freedom and opportunity to marry the person they love.  The Supreme Court’s decision is a win for love and respect, and for the equality of all families across the country.”

Denver Mayor Michael Hancock: “Today’s historic ruling by the nation’s highest court is affirmation that committed couples, no matter their orientation, can join together in a union of love. Here in Denver and Colorado, we have been at the forefront of this fight, and it brings me great joy to finally see that the ideals we have held so dear here are now extended to every person in every state.

“This is a time of celebration for everyone who displayed the courage and determination to stand up for the freedoms that we should all enjoy. The journey to this day has been long and many have sacrificed to achieve this victory, but in the end, equality, inclusivity and true happiness is the fundamental right of every single American. Today, love wins.”

Denver Clerk & Recorder Debra Johnson: “The Supreme Court recognized what my office fought hard to bring to reality here in Colorado. The fundamental right of marriage has now been acknowledged, as it always should have been, to apply with equal force to same-sex couples under the United States Constitution.

“Same-sex couples who chose to marry may experience the dignity, recognition, stability, and predictability that marriage offers. This is a victory for love, for marriage, and for families.”

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