TEXAS, USA — Late into the night on Tuesday, Nov. 29, the Senate passed a landmark same-sex marriage bill that might soon protect the LGBTQ+ community across the U.S., Texas, and the Brazos Valley.
"LGBT people are Brazos Valley residents, our neighbors. We have kids, we have jobs, and we work alongside you," Pride Community Center Executive Director Katrina Stewart said. "We're in the city. We pay our taxes and are struggling with everyday stuff just like everyone else."
The "Respect for Marriage act" was passed in the Senate Tuesday night. If signed into law, it would require the federal government recognize interracial and same-sex marriages.
"I think there's a lot of excitement among married couples and families because now they know that their relationships are secure," Equality Texas Communication Director Johnathan Gooch said. "Their families are going to remain intact and there's nothing that the Supreme Court can do to shatter those relationships."
To some people's surprise, the bill passed with both parties agreeing for the most part. As all Democrats and 12 Republican senators voted in support of the bill.
"There seems to be an understanding that LGBT people getting married to people that are the same sex is not going to hurt anything, that it's best for the country," Gooch said.
Even with that understanding the LGBTQ+ community still faces obstacles, according to equality Texas there are 24 Anti-LGBTQ+ bills prefilled for Texas's 88th legislative session that starts in 2023.
"The community has been under attack from all sides, and there's been increased violent rhetoric which has led to violence as we've seen in the Colorado shooting," Gooch said.
The bill is now on it's way to the House of Representatives for a final vote before it can go to President Biden, who says he looks forward to signing the bill into law.