PHOTOS: On the scene for marriage equality at the Capitol

Nancy Pelosi signs the Respect for Marriage Act.
In one of her final acts as speaker, Nancy Pelosi signs the Respect for Marriage Act.
Donna Aceto

Members of both houses of Congress gathered with LGBTQ advocates in the Rayburn Room at the Capitol on December 8 for a special ceremony celebrating the passage of the Respect for Marriage Act.

The gathering took place shortly after the House of Representatives approved the legislation, which enshrines protections for LGBTQ and interracial couples by requiring states to recognize existing marriages — even if the Supreme Court someday overturns Obergefell v. Hodges. The bill also repeals the Defense of Marriage Act.

The Senate passed the legislation in late November, meaning the bill now goes to President Joe Biden’s desk for his final signature — and he is eager to get it done.

Judith Kasen-Windsor, the surviving spouse of Edie Windsor, and out gay former Congressmember Barney Frank were among those who joined the lawmakers to celebrate the bill.

“I was here for the birth of DOMA, so I am very grateful to be able to be here for the funeral,” Frank said. “And it’s kind of a New Orleans moment; we are tooting our horns for the funeral — a much happier occasion than the birth.”

We were in the Rayburn Room to capture the moment. See photos below:

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi at the podium
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi acknowledges former Congressmember Barney Frank (not pictured).Donna Aceto
Senator Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin
Out lesbian Senator Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin led a bipartisan coalition of lawmakers to steer the marriage bill to passage.Donna Aceto
Judith Kasen-Windsor waves to the crowd.
Judith Kasen-Windsor waves to the crowd.Donna Aceto
Chuck Schumer at the podium.
Senator Majority Leader Chuck Schumer oversaw the passage of marriage equality in the upper house.Donna Aceto
Former Congressmember Barney Frank
Former Congressmember Barney Frank.Donna Aceto
Lawmakers Jerrold Nadler, Mark Takano, and Tammy Baldwin.
Lawmakers Jerrold Nadler, Mark Takano, and Tammy Baldwin looking on.Donna Aceto
Congressmember Rtichie Torres of the Bronx with his colleague, Chris Pappas of New Hampshire.
Congressmember Ritchie Torres of the Bronx with his colleague, Chris Pappas of New Hampshire.Donna Aceto
Barney Frank delivers remarks.
Barney Frank delivers remarks.Donna Aceto
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi with Judith Kasen-Windsor.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi with Judith Kasen-Windsor.Donna Aceto

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