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Mitch McConnell Votes Against Protections for Interracial Marriages, Despite Being in One

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) is a man who contains multitudes, apparently. McConnell voted to block the Respect for Marriage Act on Wednesday—a bill that protects some rights for same-sex and interracial married couples—despite being in an interracial marriage, himself. McConnell is married to former President Trump’s Secretary of Transportation, Elaine Chao, the first Asian American woman ever to serve in a presidential cabinet. 

Nonetheless, the Senate voted to end debate on and advance the Respect for Marriage Act by a filibuster-proof 62-37 margin, which included 12 Republicans. The legislation stops short of enshrining a federal right to same-sex marriage; instead, it requires states to respect same-sex and interracial marriages that are currently legal, in the event that the Supreme Court overturns Obergefell v. Hodges or Loving v. Virginia, which established federal rights to same-sex and interracial marriages respectively. In Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas’ opinion concurring with the court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade in June, Thomas (himself in an interracial marriage) appeared to eye marriage rights next.

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