According to the ACLU, the Respect for Marriage Act does not require states to allow same-sex couples to marry. The bill repeals the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). Under DOMA, same-sex marriages were excluded from federal recognition in over 1,000 contexts, from Social Security survivor benefits to the ability to sponsor a spouse for citizenship to equitable tax treatment. In addition, DOMA did not require states to respect same-sex marriages performed by other states.
The 2013 United States v. Windsor decision is the current precedent. This decision struck down the federal recognition portion of DOMA. However, since Dobbs' overturning, there is now fear that Windsor is also at risk. The Respect for Marriage act also requires states to recognize marriages from other states. This bill is a fail safe if Obergefell v. Hodges is overturned, and based on recent comments from Justice Thomas, this is a possibility. Although the bill is limited, it has the most congressional support for a pro-lgbt+bill ever.
Next, the bill will go to the Senate. It will require 10 Republicans to join the 50 Democrats to pass.