Barack and Michelle Obama blesses couple’s same sex marriage
NEWLYWEDS Julie Robinson and Rosa Caceres have received a special letter of congratulations of the highest order.
US President Barack Obama and his wife Michelle Obama have personally signed a letter wishing the Fingal Head couple well after the pair tied the knot at ceremony in Orlando, Florida on August 1.
Despite having been together for 17 years, the marriage was only made possible thanks to recent law reforms in the US allowing same sex couples to marry.
"We go back home, to the states, every two years and with the laws changing, she (Ms Caceres) asked me to marry her officially," Ms Robinson said.
The pair had a commitment ceremony 15 years ago, but Ms Robinson said being married meant a lot to the couple.
"It was a beautiful ceremony," she said. "I feel different, even though we had our commitment ceremony 15 years ago.
"Now that we're married… this is like any other couple. We're now under the legalities of any other couple.
"It basically gives us peace of mind knowing if anything happened to either one of us, we're each other's next of kin. It's such a relief."
Ms Robinson said the wedding took six months of planning, which included 3am calls to church ministers and florists in the US.
As for the presidential letter, Ms Robinson said her wife's eight years in the US Navy, including active service on Operation Desert Storm, may have helped.
Richmond MP Justine Elliot said she was shown the letter by her two constituents and close friends during a discussion about the importance of marriage equality.
"This meant so much to them-the President of the United States endorsing and congratulating them on being married," she said. "They contrast this with the current situation in Australia and simply cannot understand why the Prime Minister does not support marriage equality and their right to marry here.
"If the White House can turn rainbow, then surely this House can do it too."
Ms Robinson also pointed out the economic loss to Australia by not supporting marriage equality.
"We spent nearly $6000 American with florists, with invitations, the minister, church, caterers and all our friends and family."
LETTER FROM THE OBAMAS
FROM The White House Washington:
Congratulations to you on your wedding day.
May this special time be blessed with love, laughter, and happiness.
We wish you all the best as you embark on your journey together, and we hope your bond grows stronger with each passing year.
Sincerely, Barack Obama (signed) and Michelle Obama (signed).