Hagel: All states complying with same-sex benefits order


All states are now complying with a Pentagon order to allow same-sex spouses to obtain ID cards after some had resisted it, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said Friday.

“Following consultations between the National Guard Bureau and the adjutants general of the states, all eligible service members, dependents and retirees — including same-sex spouses — are now able to obtain ID cards in every state,” Hagel said in a statement.

Nine states had initially declined to offer ID cards to same-sex couples, denying them access to military benefits, after the Pentagon said it would granting full benefits to same-sex couples.

The states cited their state constitutions banning same-sex marriage.

In October, Hagel issued an order calling for the nine states to begin granting the ID cards to same-sex spouses. But some Republican state governors, including Texas Gov. Rick Perry and Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin, said they might not comply.

In the end, all of the states opted to begin issuing the ID cards. Texas, for instance, said it would begin processing ID cards last month under an agreement that federal personnel would handle the registrations.

The Pentagon changed its policy toward granting same-sex benefits this summer, in response to the Supreme Court striking down the Defense of Marriage Act.