August 2, 2010 at 8:44 am EST | by Chris Johnson
N.H. Senate candidate calls for end to DOMA

A New Hampshire Democratic candidate in a competitive race for a U.S. Senate seat on Friday forcefully called on Congress to repeal the Defense of Marriage Act.

Rep. Paul Hodes (D-N.H.), who’s running to succeed retiring U.S. Sen. Judd Gregg (R-N.H.), spoke out against DOMA during a dinner speech at the National Stonewall Democrats biennial convention.

“We have to end D-O-M-A!” he shouted. “Time to put it away!”

Hodes has been in favor of repealing DOMA for some time. He’s a co-sponsor of the Respect for Marriage Act — a bill in the U.S. House that would overturn DOMA.

Should Hodes win in November, he would be one of a handful of U.S. senators who support marriage rights for same-sex couples.

Still, he could be facing an uphill battle in his pursuit of a Senate seat. The LGBT support he was soliciting during the convention speech may be necessary to drive him over the edge in the race.

Hodes would be facing one of numerous Republican candidates seeking the GOP nomination for the general election. Two of these Republican candidates — former New Hampshire Attorney General Kelly Ayotte and businessman Bill Bennie — are polling several digits higher than Hodes in the polls.

Chris Johnson is Chief Political & White House Reporter for the Washington Blade. Johnson attends the daily White House press briefings and is a member of the White House Correspondents' Association. Follow Chris

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