The Defense of Marriage Act, or DOMA, impacted more than 1,100 statutes and regulations, barring same sex couples from the federal benefits enjoyed by heterosexual couples. The region's senators signed onto a letter to the president asking his administration to quickly disband any of the barriers that are keeping same sex couples from receiving equal treatment.
They're also asking the government to treat same sex couples in places like Virginia, where gay marriage is constitutionally banned, the same as in places where it's legal, such as D.C. and Maryland.
The lawmakers are also calling for passage of the Respect for Marriage Act, which would strike DOMA from the federal books for good. Of the 38 senators who signed the letter to the president, not one was a Republican.