Republicans have resurrected the Marriage and Religious Freedom Act which died in the last session, rebranded it as the First Amendment Defense Act, and will try once again to get it passed. Very little has changed since their last attempt, except perhaps the level of determination the party is experiencing as they await the Supreme Court ruling on marriage equality.
Yesterday, Utah Senator Mike Lee (photo above) introduced theFirst Amendment Defense Act in the senate, while Idaho congressman Raúl Labrador (photo right) filed a similar bill in the House of Representatives. The Hill reports that the bill has 18 co-sponsors in the Senate and 57 in the House, including Rep. Dan Lipinski from Illinois, who is the only Democrat to endorse the bill.
According to Rep. Labrador, the First Amendment Defense Act“would prevent any federal agency from denying a tax exemption, grant, contract, license, or certification to an individual, association, or business based on their belief that marriage is a union between a man and a woman. For example, the bill would prohibit the IRS from stripping a church of its tax exemption for refusing to officiate same-sex weddings.”