EQFL NOTE: Today is a truly historic day in the continuing march toward fulll recognition of the marriages of same-gender couples. With multiple polls show a growing majority of Americans supporting marriage equality, this Federal Appeals Court decision sets the stage for for eliminating at least a portion of DOMA. This decison is a huge blow to Section 3 of DOMA, the part that allows the federal government to pick and choose which lawfully created marriages they will and willl not recognize.
HISTORIC: Federal appeals court strikes down DOMA
May 31, 2012
BY CHRIS JOHNSON
A significant blow came to the Defense of Marriage Act on Thursday when for the first time a federal appeals court ruled the anti-gay law was unconstitutional.
In a unanimous 3-0 decision, the U.S. First Circuit Court of Appeals in Massachusetts ruled that Section 3 of DOMA, which prohibit federal recognition of same-sex marriage, violated married same-sex couples rights under the U.S. Constitution.
"To conclude, many Americans believe that marriage is the union of a man and a woman, and most Americans livein states where that is the law today," the decision states. "One virtue of federalism is that it permits this diversity of governance based on local choice, but this applies as well to the states that have chosen to legalize same-sex marriage. Under current Supreme Court authority, Congress' denial of federal benefits to same-sex couples lawfully married in Massachusetts has not been adequately supported by any permissible federal interest."