SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) – San Francisco Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone sent a letter to senators ahead of a possible vote on the Respect for Marriage Act, which would nationally codify same-sex and interracial marriages in the event U.S. Supreme Court decisions protecting them were overturned.

Cordileone — a conservative Roman Catholic prelate who made headlines in May for banning House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-San Francisco) from receiving the sacrament of Holy Communion — stated in the July 22 letter that “it was never discrimination, however, to simply maintain that an inherent aspect of the definition of marriage itself is the complementarity between the two sexes.”

Cordileone penned the letter as part of his role as chairman of the committee on laity, marriage, family life and youth of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.

Congressional Democrats brought the Respect For Marriage Act up for a vote after Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas — in an opinion concurring with the majority in the Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization case, which overturned the national constitutional right to an abortion — stated that the court should also reconsider cases that established national constitutional rights to contraception, same-sex intimacy and same-sex marriage.

House Democrats brought up a separate bill to protect the right to birth control, but the marriage bill garnered more Republican support, with 47 Republicans voting yes, which led Democratic Senate leader Chuck Schumer to say he wants to bring it to the upper chamber.

Cordileone rejects the premise that the right to same-sex marriage is threatened, calling the bill “unnecessary.”

“The Supreme Court’s majority was explicit in its Dobbs holding that the decision had no bearing on the issue,” he stated.

While he stated that “people who experience same-sex attraction should be treated with the same respect and compassion as anyone, on account of their human dignity, and never be subject to unjust discrimination,” Cordileone wrote that codifying the right to same-sex marriage would discriminate against people who don’t believe same-sex marriage is OK.

“Governments continue to use marriage redefinition laws to threaten the conscience and religious freedom of individuals such as wedding vendors, and entities such as foster care and other social service providers, who seek to serve their communities without being punished for their longstanding and well-founded beliefs,” Cordileone stated.

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Cordileone went on to state that “The concern that the bill could require federal recognition of ‘marriages’ of more than two persons is not far-fetched, as at least three cities in Massachusetts have already legally enshrined so-called polyamorous domestic partnerships.”

The letter does not mention interracial marriages, which are protected in the bill, but are not against the teachings of the Catholic Church.

Cordileone, who was appointed San Francisco’s archbishop by Pope Benedict XVI in 2012, is a longtime opponent of same-sex marriage, having personally contributed $13,000 to the successful campaign to ban same-sex marriage in California in 2008, according to the Los Angeles Times.

Cordileone has also been a champion for other conservative causes: prior to banning Pelosi from communion, he expressed support for banning weekly-communicant President Joe Biden for his support for abortion rights from the sacrament, but Cardinal Wilton Gregory of Washington, D.C. said he would not support such a move himself.