Elizabeth Warren Reintroduces Refund Equality Act

Democratic presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren has renewed her commitment to providing reparations for same-sex couples who were shorted tax dollars before same-sex marriage was legalized.

The Senator from Massachusetts wrote on Twitter Saturday (June 22) that same-sex couples who were married in the 10 states that legalized same-sex marriage before 2015 – when it became federal law – paid over $50 million in federal taxes because they had to file as individuals.

“It wasn’t until marriage equality became law that gay and lesbian couples could jointly file tax returns, so they paid more in taxes,” Warren wrote. “Our government owes them more than $50 million for the years our discriminatory tax code left them out. We must right these wrongs.”

On June 20, Warren reintroduced the Refund Equality Act, which would amend past tax returns of LGBTQ couples married in states where same-sex marriage was legalized before it was nationwide. If passed, approximately $57 million would be owed to these couples.

This is not the first time Warren has been vocal about this issue. She introduced the original version of the bill in July 2017. It was co-sponsored by 36 members of Congress, but the act was stalled.

“The federal government forced legally married same-sex couples in Massachusetts to file as individuals and pay more in taxes for almost a decade,” Warren said in a statement. “We need to call out that discrimination and to make it right – Congress should pass the Refund Equality Act immediately.”