Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (left) and Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse talk during a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on the Respect for Marriage Act on Thursday. The panel cleared the bill, which would repeal the Defense of Marriage Act, but Durbin said there were no immediate plans to bring it to the full Senate.
However, Durbin did not dispute the Texan’s contention that the legislation is unlikely to receive a vote this year or next. The Majority Whip blamed the likelihood of a Republican filibuster for the unclear legislative path of the DOMA repeal. Durbin, who voted in favor of DOMA when it originally passed, said he now regrets that vote.
“I voted for DOMA. I believe that I was wrong,” the Illinois Democrat said. “My views on the subject have changed.”
Vice President Joe Biden waits to conduct a mock swearing-in ceremony with Sen. Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii, in the Capitol's Old Senate Chamber, December 2, 2014. Schatz was sworn in to serve the remainder of his term since he was appointed to the seat after Sen. Daniel Inouye, D-Hawaii, passed away.