Defense of Marriage Act Unconstitutional, says First Circuit Court of Appeals

Defense of Marriage Act Unconstitutional, says First Circuit Court of Appeals

In a 33-page Opinion handed down by the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit, the Defense of Marriage Act, DOMA, was declared unconstitutional.

I like that the opinion written by Judge Boudin states that:

"DOMA does not formally invalidate same-sex marriages in states that permit them, but its adverse consequences for such a choice are considerable. Notably, it prevents same-sex married couples from filing joint federal tax returns, which can lessen tax burdens, and prevents the surviving spouse of a same-sex marriage from collecting Social Security survivor benefits. DOMA also leaves federal employees unable to share their health insurance and certain other medical benefits with same-sex spouses."

It is exactly what the fight has been all along. It is just wrong to offer one class of citizen one benefit, while denying those same benefits to another class.

It is worth noting that aside from Judge Boudin, the other judges on this opinion are Juan Torruella and Michael Boudin, who, according to ThinkProgress, are both Republican appointees.

Judge Boudin expects his Opinion to be challenged and concludes his Opinion, which can be found here, with "Anticipating that certiorari will be sought and that Supreme Court review of DOMA is highly likely, the mandate is stayed, maintaining the district court's stay of its injunctive judgment, pending further order of this court."

So, I wonder where this will go next. Will the Supreme Court finally have to step in and make a declare that the DOMA is unconstitutional?

Regardless though, read the opinion. It is very well written and a very good read.


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