Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA)

The Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), is a U.S. federal law that allowed states to refuse to recognize same-sex marriages performed under the laws of other states and which restricted federal marriage benefits. The law passed both houses of Congress by large majorities and was signed into law by President Bill Clinton on September 21, 1996. Section 3 of DOMA had codified the non-recognition of same-sex marriages for all federal purposes, including insurance benefits for government employees, Social Security survivors’ benefits, immigration, and the filing of joint tax returns.

Section 3 of DOMA was found unconstitutional in eight federal courts, including the First and Second Circuit Court of Appeals, on issues including bankruptcy, public employee benefits, estate taxes, and immigration. The U.S. Supreme Court in United States v. Windsor declared Section 3 of DOMA unconstitutional on June 26, 2013, “as a deprivation of the equal liberty of persons that is protected by the Fifth Amendment.” [ Wikipedia → ]

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John Boehner

Boehner triples cost cap for defending ‘Defense of Marriage Act’ in court

Tuesday, October 4, 2011
The U.S. House has tripled the cost cap for the legal expenses of hiring a private attorney to defend the Defense of Marriage Act in court to reach a potential total sum of $1.5 million. [ Read more → ]

Obama addresses annual HRC dinner; calls for repeal of DOMA, rebukes GOP candidates (Video)

Saturday, October 1, 2011
President Barack Obama on Saturday evening delivered the keynote address a gathering of more than 3,000 LGBT rights advocates at the Human Rights Campaign's 15th Annual HRC National Dinner, and called for repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act and issued a sharp rebuke to GOP presidential hopefuls for not supporting gay troops. [ Read more → ]

Pentagon gives military chaplains approval to perform same-sex weddings

Friday, September 30, 2011
The U.S. Department of Defense on Friday announced Friday that the Chaplain Corps of the armed forces are authorized to perform same-sex wedding ceremonies for same-sex military couples in states where same-sex marriage is legal. [ Read more → ]
Ileana Ros-Lehtinen

Hate group FRC angry at Republican for co-sponsoring DOMA repeal bill

Tuesday, September 27, 2011
The anti-gay hate group, the Family Research Council is furious that a Republican in Congress is co-sponsoring a bill which would repeal the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). [ Read more → ]
John Boehner

House Democrats to Boehner: Mr. Speaker, your DOMA attorney is out of line

Monday, September 26, 2011
Six Democratic lawmakers on Monday sent U.S. House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio), a letter reiterating their request for a briefing on the efforts of the law firm hired by the Speaker to defend the Defense of Marriage Act in several ongoing federal court challenges. [ Read more → ]

Marriage bans even worse than we thought

Monday, September 26, 2011
Holy cow. Where to begin? Dustin Lance Black's play about Prop 8 hit Broadway for an incredible night. The tapes of the Prop 8 trial might actually get released. Florida's working on domestic partnerships, North Carolina's marriage ban is even worse than we thought, New Hampshire might repeal marriage, and Missouri -- yes, Missouri -- favors legal recognition for gay couples. [ Read more → ]
Timothy Dolan

Archbishop warns Obama of ‘conflict of enormous proportions’ over DOMA repeal

Thursday, September 22, 2011
In a sharply critical letter to the President, Catholic Archbishop of New York Timothy Dolan said that “recent actions" taken by the Administration "escalate the threat to marriage," and urged Obama to discriminate against gay and lesbian Americans by supporting the "Defense Of Marriage Act." [ Read more → ]

Hundreds of service members discharged under DADT expected to reenlist

Monday, September 5, 2011
With the repeal of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" scheduled to take effect on Sept. 20, the U.S. military is expecting many of the service members discharged because of their sexual orientation to seek reenlistment. [ Read more → ]

Judicial Watch, anti-gay Family Research Council sues DOJ over DOMA records

Thursday, September 1, 2011
Judicial Watch announced Wednesday it has filed a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit against the U.S. Department of Justice on behalf of the Family Research Council, seeking records related to the Obama Administration’s decision not to defend the constitutionality of the Defense of Marriage Act. [ Read more → ]

What are the Proposition 8 proponents trying to hide?

Monday, August 29, 2011
Just what are the Prop 8 proponents trying to hide, and why are they afraid to let the public see their witnesses being cross-examined? We may find out after a hearing on Monday. Also, John Boehner's defense of DOMA is found to be full of junk science, a semi-reprieve for LGBTs fearing deportation, and there's lots of work still to do in Maine. [ Read more → ]
John Boehner

Boehner’s DOMA defense contains junk science, bad sources

Wednesday, August 24, 2011
On Monday it was discovered that one of the experts, Professor Lisa Diamond, cited by Speaker of the House John Boehner’s legal team in their defense of DOMA complained that her work was being distorted. [ Read more → ]
Tom M

Petition launched to get Congress to call out false anti-gay testimony

Tuesday, August 9, 2011
While there is a need for levity and a desire for all sides of issues involving the gay community to be heard, the constant calling upon of these “morality groups” for Congressional testimony in spite of their irregularities mentioned does present a problem in terms resolving the issues of the gay community in a fair manner. [ Read more → ]
Bradford Wells and Anthony John Makk

U.S. government rips man away from AIDS-afflicted spouse

Tuesday, August 9, 2011
After some legal wins in the cases of bi-national gay and lesbian couples, this devastating story comes out of San Francisco. [caption id="attachment_30911" align="alignleft" width="250" caption="Bradford Wells and Anthony John Makk"][media-credit name="Noah Berger, Special to the SF Chronicle" align="alignleft" width="250"][/media-credit][/caption] The San Francisco Chronicle reports... [ Read more → ]

Congress lashes out at gay families, APA supports gay marriage

Monday, August 8, 2011
It's been a busy week, with an incredibly offensive anti-gay brief coming out of Congress. But a surprise announcement from the American Psychological Association could put a stop to such briefs in the future. [ Read more → ]

Study: LGBT equality movement seriously outspent; needs more focus, money

Wednesday, August 3, 2011
The LGBT movement is making progress, but it’s being seriously outspent by opponents and still has “a long way” to go to reach equality. That’s the conclusion of an in-depth analysis by an independent think tank. [ Read more → ]
Al Franken

NOM whining that Al Franken ‘ambushed’ Tom Minnery during DOMA hearing

Tuesday, August 2, 2011
Over two weeks after an incident in which a Focus on the Family spokesperson was busted during a Congressional hearing for distorting a study, the National Organization for Marriage is trying to sneak in a defense of that spokesperson. [ Read more → ]

The latest wrinkle in the Prop 8 trial, New York challenges DOMA

Monday, August 1, 2011
A new twist in the Prop 8 case, with a court date coming just days after a controversial new judge is expected to join the Supreme Court. New York launches its own attack on the Defense of Marriage Act, and polling brings mostly good news, and a little bad. [ Read more → ]
Eric Schneiderman

New York joins Massachusetts in challenging constitutionality of DOMA

Tuesday, July 26, 2011
After legalizing same-sex marriages last month, New York State now has joined Massachusetts in challenging the federal governments Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). [ Read more → ]

New York gay couples marry, Al Franken catches a fibber in DOMA hearing

Tuesday, July 26, 2011
Pretty quiet week, nothing too exciting -- except everyone in New York getting married! Plus hearings on DOMA repeal, with Al Franken calling out an anti-gay liar. Plus more news from Maryland to Washington state. This week's Marriage News Watch is here. [ Read more → ]
Tom Minnery

Tom Minnery’s lies are commonplace in religious right data

Monday, July 25, 2011
Minnery's misreading of study in order present a bad picture of same-sex households is commonplace in religious right data. Often times, religious right spokespeople will cite studies which have nothing to do with same-sex households in order to claim that these households are not the best place to raise children. [ Read more → ]
John Boehner

Boehner: ‘DOMA is law of the land, and should remain law of the land’

Saturday, July 23, 2011
U.S. House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) this week indicated that he would not bring up the "Respect For Marriage Act" up for a vote in the House of Representatives. [ Read more → ]

Durham N.C. city council passes resolution opposing anti-gay marriage amendment

Friday, July 22, 2011
The Durham, N.C. City Council on Thursday passed a resolution stating its opposition to a proposed state constitutional amendment banning gay marriage. The resolution, sponsored by Councilman Mike Woodward, was passed unanimously by the seven member council. [ Read more → ]
Leon Panetta

Panetta to announce Pentagon is ready to certify repeal of ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’

Thursday, July 21, 2011
U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta is expected to announce on Friday that the Pentagon is ready to certify the repeal of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," paving the way for gay men and women to serve openly in all branches of the U.S. military. [ Read more → ]

Sen. Chris Coons: DOMA says ‘it’s OK for the government to discriminate’

Wednesday, July 20, 2011
At Wednesday’s landmark Senate Judiciary Committee hearing to consider new legislation that would repeal the Defense of Marriage Act, Sen. Chris Coons (D-Del.) said the 15-year-old law was discriminatory and urged his colleagues to support its repeal. [ Read more → ]

Franken busts ‘Focus on the Family’ for lying about federal study in DOMA hearing

Wednesday, July 20, 2011
In a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on the repeal of the "Defense of Marriage Act," Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) on Wednesday called DOMA an “immoral and discriminatory” law and challenged a key witness, an official with the mammoth Focus on Family group. [ Read more → ]
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