When President Joe Biden signs the Respect for Marriage Act this week, he’ll be flanked by Vice President Kamala Harris, first lady Jill Biden, and gay drag queen story hour performer Marti Cummings, according to an invite posted by Cummings.
"To be a non binary drag artist invited to the White House is something I never imagined would happen," Cummings wrote in a Monday social media post, along with a photo of an invitation from Biden. The bill signing ceremony is scheduled to take place on Tuesday.
Cummings has been a performer at the controversial drag queen story hour for years. As recently as Dec. 4, Cummings shared a photo at a drag queen story hour featuring a number of toddlers. "Despite what conservatives say, this family friend [sic] event is a way to spread joy, teach acceptance & love," Cummings tweeted.
I love doing Drag Story Hour. Despite what conservatives say, this family friend event is a way to spread joy, teach acceptance & love. A way to bring people together. Kids just want to hear their favorite stories…keep spreading hate because I’m gonna keep spreading joy pic.twitter.com/uhdseXtAua
— Marti (@MartiGCummings) December 4, 2022
Critics of performances such as those say they often expose children to sexually inappropriate material, such as men in revealing and suggestive clothing. Despite those concerns, drag queen story hours remain popular in many deep-blue pockets of the country such as New York City, where Cummings unsuccessfully ran to be a member of the city council.
The White House did not respond to a request for comment.
The Respect for Marriage Act passed the Senate in November with the support of a dozen Republican senators. Forty-seven House Republicans also voted for the bill, which repeals the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act and requires the federal government to recognize gay and interracial marriages performed in the United States.
Cummings shared a photo with several other drag queens and a boy on Twitter in June, writing "Some joy for your day……Logan was one of the kids who came out to celebrate pride at @queensbotanicl - he was so excited & said he wants to perform w us next year!"
According to Cummings’s website, "Drag and Politics goes hand in hand." Cummings ran for a seat on the New York City Council in 2021 but appeared to receive zero votes, according to Ballotpedia. In June 2020, Cummings claimed to be arrested during a Black Lives Matter protest.