Wisconsin Sen. Ron Johnson Would Vote for ‘Unnecessary’ Same-Sex Marriage Bill

Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI) said Thursday he would vote in favor of a bill that would enshrine same-sex marriage into federal law, even though he believes the legislation is “unnecessary.”

In a statement to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Johnson said about the legislation Democrats have titled the Respect for Marriage Act, “Prior to the Obergefell v. Hodges Supreme Court decision on gay marriage, I supported civil unions.”

“After Obergefell, I considered the issue settled,” he added, but then made a distinction between the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision, which abortion supporters claimed was “settled,” and the Obergefell ruling:

Unlike Roe v. Wade, I do not see any scenario in which the Supreme Court would overturn Obergefell. The Respect for Marriage Act is another example of Democrats creating a state of fear over an issue in order to further divide Americans for their political benefit. Even though I feel the Respect for Marriage Act is unnecessary, should it come before the Senate, I see no reason to oppose it.

Like the Right to Contraception Act, the Respect for Marriage Act is another knee-jerk response by Democrats to Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas’ note in his concurring opinion in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, in which the Court returned decisions about abortion to the states.

In overturning Roe v. Wade, Thomas suggested the Court should reconsider its other rulings, such as those concerning same-sex marriage and contraception.

Following Thomas’ opinion, House Democrats quickly set out, with 47 Republicans supporting them, to pass the bill to codify same-sex marriage into federal law, by a vote of 267-157.

Carl Trueman and Andrew T. Walker, fellows with the Ethics and Public Policy Center, asserted at National Review the Respect for Marriage legislation actually “deserves no respect.”

In their fear-mongering about the Court’s decision in Dobbs and other recent majority decisions, Democrats have hyped the same-sex marriage measure as one that will not only codify “marriage equality” for federal purposes, but will also protect interracial marriage – as if such marriages have been endangered in some way.

Trueman and Walker note:

The difference of the sexes is what gives rise to the need for marriage to begin with: To unite a mother and father’s enfleshed love to the need of their offspring’s security and well-being. So conservatives should brush off hysterics that opposition to the Respect for Marriage Act is akin to wanting interracial marriage banned or voided. That is hogwash. Race is a social construct. Male and female are biological realities, and the relationship of marriage, which requires sexual consummation and therefore involves a sexual complementarity, is not something that can be transformed by mere manipulation of the dictionary definition.

“Marriage secures the foundation for society’s cultivation,” the authors assert. “It bonds child to parent in a permanent, stable union. Social science abundantly ratifies these truths. Same-sex marriages in no way contribute to the needs of society since they are, by definition, childless.”

Gay marriage “actually represents the triumph of the sexual revolution,” they add, and “remains the result of a sexual revolution that assumes that sexual desire is central to identity, has turned sexual acts into mere recreation, and denies the significance of biology for human personhood.”

“Those are the foundations of the ideology that has ultimately borne fruit in calls for kindergartners to be taught LGBTQ curricula and preteens pumped full of hormones,” they write.

In addition to Johnson, other Republican senators who have expressed support for the same-sex marriage bill are Susan Collins (R-ME), Rob Portman (R-OH), Thom Tillis (R-NC), and Lisa Murkowski (R-AK).

The bill will need 10 Republican senators to overcome a filibuster.

Trueman and Walker said Capitol Hill insiders tell them the legislation “could easily pass.”

“The cravenness of Republicans who are looking to ‘move on’ from supposedly divisive ‘social issues’ will deserve their comeuppance should they vote for this bill,” they warn. “In no way can one be considered a ‘conservative’ if one is willing to jettison the boundaries of the natural family.”

The Star News Network reached out to Johnson’s office for comment, specifically to whether the senator believes states have no right to decide their own marriage laws and whether Johnson equates same-sex “civil unions” with “marriage.”

Johnson’s office has not yet responded to the request for comment.

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Susan Berry, PhD, is national education editor at The Star News Network. Email tips to [email protected]
Photo “Ron Johnson” by Gage Skidmore. CC BY-SA 2.0. Background Photo “Same-Sex Marriage” by Guy of taipei. CC BY-SA 3.0.


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