And the boots of progress continue…

The Obama administration has just gotten even more active in being on the right side of history:

The Obama administration on Friday urged the Supreme Court to strike down the Defense Of Marriage Act in a brief that calls the law unconstitutional because it violates “the fundamental guarantee of equal protection.”

Solicitor General Donald Verrilli argues in the brief that Section 3 of the 1996 federal law prohibits the marriage of same-sex couples and should get the court’s close scrutiny:

“The law denies to tens of thousands of same-sex couples who are legally married under state law an array of important federal benefits that are available to legally married opposite-sex couples. Because this discrimination cannot be justified as substantially furthering any important governmental interest, Section 3 is unconstitutional.”

Emphasis mine. It’s clear that DOMA and other anti-equality measures have always been about a lack of comfort and sexual maturity amongst Christians and those who have been duped by bogus Christian arguments and, often, outright lies.

I, for one, cannot wait to see marriage equality spread across the United States. The only downside is that when absolutely nothing bad happens as a result, I’ll be stuck being associated with the dwindling but still strong base of bigots that pervade my generation and the generation ahead of me.

3 Responses

  1. Three comments:
    1. Note that the administration conceded that Section 3 does pass the rational basis test (I disagree), despite finding no such rational basis. If the Supreme Court finds that rational basis is the proper test, as has happened in other courts at the appeals level, it could be bad.
    2. They make a strong and solid case for heightened scrutiny, which is great to see. If they win this in the DOMA case, it could affect so much in the future (and repair so much in the past).
    3. In a footnote, they refer to the Prop 8 case. As nearly all of their argument applies to the Prop 8 case as well as to DOMA, I am now expecting them to file an amicus brief in that case. I hope they are being pressured to do so. It’s not logically consistent to make these arguments about level of scrutiny in DOMA, but not in Prop 8.

  2. Oops. 4th comment… the Windsor case leaves DOMA Section 2 unchalleged, so no state will have to recognize icky gay marriages from other states, even if the federal government does. Travelling or moving from state to state, same-sex spouses become married and annulled and married and annulled under state law. Hopefully a sweeping decision against Prop 8 (I truly can’t see any other outcome) will render a decision on Section 2 irrelevant.

  3. I’m pretty sure DOMA is going down and I still say the administration should have fought for it. To do otherwise might have left the question of the federal governments nose being in an area that it has no right to be in unanswered. This way we get a pretty irrevocable ruling.

    Of course, if it is upheld we will have yet another expansion of federal power. This could be just as bad as the commerce clause. I half expect the court to say that since marriages involve interstate commerce that the feds can regulate the matter.

    That isn’t what was argued, but I’m afraid it would have been a compelling argument for those who feel the federal government has unlimited power via the commerce clause.

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