Melissa Etheridge Announces Engagement to Partner Linda Wallem in CNN Interview, Sounds Off on Supreme Court Gay Rights Ruling

Openly gay musician says she and her partner are going to tie the knot now that the nation's highest court has struck down Prop 8 and ruled DOMA unconstitutional

By Josh Grossberg Jun 26, 2013 4:28 PMTags
Melissa Etheridge, Linda WallemTommaso Boddi/WireImage

Melissa Etheridge celebrated Wednesday's Supreme Court ruling overturning the federal gay marriage ban by announcing she and her partner, Linda Wallem, are getting married!

Phoning into to CNN's Ashleigh Banfield to offer up her reaction to the gay community's historic victory, which also saw the High Court strike down California's Proposition 8, the rocker revealed the good news at the tail end of the interview.

"It is about family and I love my four kids," Etheridge said. "I called my now fiancée. I'm looking forward to marrying my partner of three years we've been together. I'm going to get married in the state of California. I woke [the kids] up this morning telling them the Supreme Court ruling on DOMA…I love everybody out there. It's a great day."

The "Like the Way I Do" singer also confirmed the news on Twitter, writing, "I look forward to exercising my American civil liberties and getting fully, completely and legally married this year to my true love of over three years, Linda Wallem."

Etheridge and Wallem, both 52, first began dating in 2010 after Etheridge and former partner Tammy Lynn Michaels separated after eight years together.

Wallem is an actress, writer and producer who had a bit part in Sleepless in Seattle before going on to write for such sitcoms Cybill and That '70s Show and finding even greater success as the cocreator of the Showtime drama series Nurse Jackie.

Heralding the Supreme Court's decision that the Defense of Marriage Act was unconstitutional, Etheridge also told CNN today reaffirmed her pride as an American citizen.

"Love is love and America is beautiful. It's a wonderful day…for America, for all its citizens, for our amazing constitution," added the Grammy winner. "And just God bless America and the forefathers that put this sort of document in place that could withstand this sort of questioning and sort of putting to test our diversity in America and our civil rights. It's just an amazing, amazing day. I'm proud to be an American."