PHILADELPHIA, October 3, 2013– State Sen. Daylin Leach (D-Montgomery/Delaware) today joined Reps. Brian Sims (D-Philadelphia) and Steve McCarter (D-Montgomery/Philadelphia) at a press conference in Philadelphia’s Love Park to announce a new marriage equality bill to be introduced in the House of Representatives.

Leach, who has drafted and introduced his own marriage equality bill, Senate Bill 719, during the past three legislative sessions, thanked Sims and McCarter for inviting him to participate in the event and applauded them for their leadership on this issue.

“For much of my tenure here in the General Assembly, I’ve worked tirelessly to grant same sex couples the same rights and privileges that, currently, only a segment of the population enjoys,” Leach said. “I am thrilled to see the growing support for this movement, and I am confident that we will succeed in our mission and we will end up on the right side of history on this issue.”

House Bill 1686, the Pennsylvania Marriage Equality Act, would legalize same sex marriage in the Commonwealth. The bill has bipartisan support in the House of Representatives.

In June, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the federal Defense of Marriage Act. Shortly thereafter, Montgomery County Register of Wills Bruce Hanes began issuing marriage licenses to same sex couples in the 17th District. Leach, a registered officiant with Universal Life Church, this summer performed multiple same sex marriages for local couples that received marriage licenses from Hanes.

H.B. 1686 will be introduced today. Leach’s S.B. 719, which has five cosponsors in the Senate, currently awaits consideration by the Senate Judiciary Committee.