With the U.S. Capitol in the background, a person waves a rainbow flag as they participant in a rally in support of the LGBTQIA+ community at Freedom Plaza, Saturday, June 12, 2021, in Washington. Credit: Jose Luis Magana / AP

Maine Republican Sen. Susan Collins said she believes the Senate will vote next week on a bill she co-authored to protect same-sex marriages under federal law.

Last week, bill sponsors picked up enough GOP support to avoid a Senate filibuster of the Respect for Marriage Act. The bill would require the federal government to recognize same-sex marriages that were legally performed in any state along with any associated rights, such as tax benefits for married couples.

“We were able to secure 12 Republican votes that brought us to 62 votes in favor of the bill. And I am very pleased about that. I expect that we will finish the bill next week when we go back into session,” Collins said.

But the bill would not require states to issue marriage license to same-sex couples or require any religious organizations to perform such ceremonies. After the Supreme Court overturned the Roe v. Wade decision on abortion, LGBTQ groups fear that conservatives justices could target previous rulings legalizing same-sex marriage.

This story appears through a media partnership with  Maine Public.