WASHINGTON -- The lesbian National Guardsman whose fruitless effort to secure an audience with someone in Speaker of the House John Boehner's office was first reported by The Huffington Post Wednesday will meet with one of his policy advisers next week.
The meeting between Chief Warrant Officer 2 Charlie Morgan and Katherine Haley, who focuses on social policy, education and labor in the Speaker's office, is set for Thursday, Feb. 9, on Capitol Hill.
Morgan, who is battling Stage IV breast cancer, had tried unsuccessfully for weeks to get a meeting to make her case for the repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act, which bars her wife, Karen, from receiving military and other benefits such as Social Security survivor stipends. Only after HuffPost contacted Boehner's office for comment did it clear a slot on Haley's schedule.
Morgan lives in New Hampshire with Karen and their daughter, Casey Elena, 4. She will travel to Washington alone for the meeting.
"She looks forward to sharing her story and speaking for her own family, and in doing so, for countless others harmed by these unjust laws," said Zeke Stokes, a spokesman for the Servicemembers Legal Defense Network. The group has filed a lawsuit on behalf of Morgan and seven others to overturn DOMA.
On Thursday, the Human Rights Campaign and Freedom to Marry announced a new coalition of more than 50 groups that support the Respect for Marriage Act, which would repeal DOMA and require the federal government to recognize any legally sanctioned marriage. The measure has 136 co-sponsors in the House and 32 in the Senate.