Republicans are saying that a vote being called by the Senate majority leader is going to infringe on religious liberties, according to the Daily Wire. Majority Leader Chuck Schumer vowed that Congress will be holding a vote in the coming weeks over codifying same-sex marriage.
“A vote on marriage equality will happen on the Senate floor in the coming weeks,” Schumer told reporters, according to Politico.
The passage of the code was initially in a federal spending bill reportedly using the Respect for Marriage Act that the House of Representatives passed, 267-157, where 47 of those votes in favor coming from House Republicans. However, now, the vote is now being proposed as a standalone as Senate Democrats are working to get 10 Republican votes to bypass the 60-vote filibuster threshold.
Democrats have successfully found three Republican votes from Susan Collins (R-ME), Rob Portman (R-OH), and Thom Tillis (R-NC) who have reportedly said that they will likely vote yes on the bill.
While Collins has tried to persuade other Republicans to vote yes, they are pushing back citing religious liberty concerns regarding the language within the bill.
“We are listening carefully to the concerns that have been raised by some of our colleagues,” Collins told Politico. “And we’re looking at an amendment that would strengthen the language in the bill to make crystal clear that it does not in any way infringe upon religious liberty. And it also would correct a drafting error.”
Texas Senator Ted Cruz has reiterated the argument for an amendment, saying that he would vote against the bill, but that Republicans are working to pass an amendment to supplement it.
“This bill without a religious liberty protection would have massive consequences across our country, weaponizing the Biden administration to go and target universities, K-12 schools, social service organizations, churches, and strip them all of their tax-exempt status,” Cruz said during an episode of his podcast “The Verdict.”
Heritage Foundation research assistant Jared Eckert says that if the bill passes, then it would “create a ton of problems” and unintended consequences for both the state and federal government.
“If one state—just one state—recognizes polygamy as a legitimate marriage or legal marriage, then basically, the federal government has to do that,” Eckert said, noting the bill’s inadequacies.