Rep. Adam Smith Introduces House Bill To Change Military’s Definition Of “Spouse”

Rep. Adam Smith (D-WA) has introduced a House bill that would change the definition of military spouses. The bill would open military benefits to the husbands and wives of married gay service members. SLDN cheers via press release:

Army Veteran and Servicemembers Legal Defense Network (SLDN) Executive Director Aubrey Sarvis today applauded the introduction of HR 6046, the Military Spouses Equal Treatment Act of 2012 (MSET) that would change the definition of “spouse” in four areas of U.S. Code related to recognition, support, and benefits for married service members and veterans. The changes – including Titles 10, 32, and 38 that are challenged in SLDN’s landmark litigation, McLaughlin v. U.S., filed in October 2011 – would ensure that spouses of the same gender are eligible for key military benefits. “Our nation’s senior military leaders and commanders on the ground are increasingly uncomfortable with administering two classes of recognition, support and benefits for our nation’s service members – one for straight service members and a different one for their gay and lesbian peers. There cannot be two classes of service members, and this legislation addresses that effectively,” said Sarvis.

Read the bill here.