Finally! After dating for more than 20 years, Chopped host Ted Allen was finally able to figuratively -- and legally! -- drop to one knee and ask longtime partner Barry Rice to marry him. The celebrity chef and TV personality, 48, shared his excitement on Twitter on Wednesday, June 26, just hours after it was announced that DOMA was defeated.
"Proud to announce on this historic day that my partner of 20 years, Barry Rice, and I are engaged to be married," he shared with fans.
"We have been on pins and needles all week, getting up and running to the computer every morning to look at SCOTUSblog, the Supreme Court blog, which is the fastest way to find out how the court rules," he told Us Weekly of the nerve-wracking waiting period. "Monday goes by -- nothing on DOMA. Then, Tuesday. And yesterday [Wednesday], when the great news came down, we agreed on the spot to tie the knot."
Allen, who has been with Rice, an interior designer, for 20 years, added that though the couple could have legally tied the knot in a number of states, they didn't want to do the deed until they could get Married with a capital "M."
"We have been excited with every state that went for marriage equality, including our home state of New York," Brooklyn-based Allen told Us. "But we've also felt for a long time that we weren't that interested in getting married until we could get Married. The real deal, the same rights, the same protections, the same status and privilege as straight couples at the federal level."
"The striking down of DOMA has gotten us that," he continued. "We are grateful for, and proud of, our great country."
Allen and Rice are not the first celebrity couple to jump at the chance to get engaged after the Supreme Court's ruling, however. Singer Melissa Etheridge proposed to partner of three years, Linda Wallem, shortly after DOMA was overturned, and Veronica Mars actress Kristen Bell publicly proposed to longtime beau Dax Shepard via Twitter.
"DOMA is dead," the actor wrote in response to her virtual proposal. "Prop 8 is dead. Now let's bring my big, gay marriage to Kristen Bell to life!"