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Congressmen Fight DC Marriage


Utah congressman Jason Chaffetz has been outspoken in his opposition to same-sex marriage in Washington, D.C., ever since the city council passed -- and Mayor Adrian Fenty signed -- a marriage equality bill last month. Now Chaffetz has been joined by two U.S. senators, Oklahoma's James Inhofe (pictured) and Mississippi's Roger Wicker, and 36 other U.S. representatives in filing an amicus brief in D.C. superior court calling for a voter referendum on the issue, The Washington Post reports.

"Under the United States Constitution, they serve as members of the ultimate legislative authority for the District of Columbia and the very body which delegated to the District its limited legislative power under home rule," the filing states. "As members of the District's ultimate legislative body, amici are concerned about the extent of the District's delegated legislative authority, the preservation of Congress's constitutional authority, and the interpretation of home rule."

Although the city council passed the marriage equality bill 11-2, and the mayor quickly signed it, the proposal is now undergoing a 30-day congressional review -- as outlined by District of Columbia Home Rule Act. Still, few Hill watchers think the Democratically controlled Congress will block the proposal.

The brief from these 39 antigay marriage congress members is in support of Bishop Harry Jackson's request that the superior court reverse two rulings by the D.C. Board of Elections and Ethics prohibiting a referendum on same-sex marriage. Jackson and his attorneys were in court Wednesday in support of his challenge of those rulings.

In addition to Chaffetz, Inhofe, and Wicker, the brief is signed by House Minority Leader John Boehner (Ohio), Minority Whip Eric Cantor (Va.), and U.S. Reps. Robert Aderholt (Ala.), Todd Akin (Mo.), Michele Bachmann (Minn.), J. Gresham Barrett (S.C.), Roscoe Bartlett (Md.), Marsha Blackburn (Tenn.), John Boozman (Ark.), John Fleming (La.), J. Randy Forbes (Va.), Virginia Foxx (N.C.), Scott Garrett (N.J.), Phil Gringrey (Ga.), Louie Gohmert (Texas), Jeb Hensarling (Texas), Wally Herger (Calif.), Walter Jones (N.C.), Jim Jordan (Ohio), Steve King (Iowa), Jack Kingston (Ga.), John Kline (Minn.), Doug Lamborn (Colo.), Robert Latta (Ohio), Don Manzullo (Ill.), Michael McCaul (Texas), Thaddeus McCotter (Mich.), Patrick McHenry (N.C.), Cathy McMorris Rodgers (Wash.), Jeff Miller (Fla.), Jerry Moran (Kan.), Randy Neugebauer (Texas), Mike Pence (Ind.), Joe Pitts (Pa.), Mark Souder (Ind.), and Todd Tiahrt (Kan.).

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