FromThe New York Times:
Democrats moved to make same-sex marriage a part of their party platform, placing language that would declare a right for gay men and lesbians to marry on track for approval by the party’s leadership.
Party officials met over the weekend in Minneapolis and approved the first step in the platform-amending process. In two weeks, the entire platform committee will vote on the matter at a meeting scheduled in Detroit. Then, if approved as expected, it would move on to convention delegates in Charlotte, N.C., for final approval in September.
According to Democrats who were briefed on the vote in Minneapolis, there was no objection when the issue came up. Though the language that was voted on still could be revised, party officials do not anticipate any major obstacles going forward.
The platform language approved over the weekend also included a condemnation of the Defense of Marriage Act, which prohibits the federal government from recognizing legal same-sex marriages.
The Democratic Party’s move comes more than two months after President Obama personally backed the rights of same-sex couples to wed, making the action decidedly less controversial than it could have been had the party been in conflict with its leader.
Gay rights supporters praised the vote. “Like Americans from all walks of life, the Democratic Party has recognized that committed and loving gay and lesbian couples deserve the right to have their relationships respected as equal under the law,” said Chad Griffin, president of the Human Rights Campaign. “I believe that one day very soon the platforms of both major parties will include similar language on this issue.