Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Introduction of Respect for Marriage Act to repeal the Defense of Marriage Act

09/15/09 Congressman Jerrold Nadler press release:

The Respect for Marriage Act would repeal the federal Defense of Marriage Act "in its entirety." When implementing federal laws that affect marriage, the federal government would follow "the place-of-celebration rule recommended in the Uniform Marriage and Divorce Act, which embraces the common law principle that marriages that are valid in the state where they were entered into will be recognized." As a result, the federal government could no longer use sexual orientation as a reason to deny married couples the benefits and protections of federal law.

Congressman John Lewis distinguished himself as one of the leaders of the civil rights movement in the 1960s. Among the authors of the proposed legislation, he said in today's press release:

Respecting the dignity of every human being and the people’s right to freely make decisions about their own lives is in keeping with the most sacred and fundamental principles of our democracy. That is what made the Defense of Marriage Act so wrong. From the founding of this nation, we made exceptions to this high moral mandate, and as our history shows, it has always led to the gravest injustice. Before we travel too far down the wrong path, we must right this wrong. We must repeal DOMA and put in its place federal action that restores the integrity of our democracy. Over the years, thousands have paid the price to make this a more open, inclusive society. We must not turn back. We must progress to that point where we seek to build a national community at peace with itself.
09/14/09 Gay Couples Law:

Attorney Gideon Alper predicts that the bill will not pass because opponents will claim that it undermines state bans on same-sex marriage:
The bill infringes on state rights too much to get enough political support. Not only would it allow federal recognition of gay marriages in states that allow them, but it would also let couples married in these states keep their benefits when they travel to states that don't recognize their marriages.
Representative Barney Frank has decided not to co-sponsor the bill. He prefers reliance on lawsuits such as Gill et al. v. Office of Personnel Management et al. (D. Mass. filed Mar. 3, 2009) to overturn the federal DOMA.

09/15/09 Bay Windows:
The Nadler bill, said Frank, "has zero chance of passage, even out of committee. It’s a mistake." ... But doesn’t Frank’s refusal to co-sponsor the bill, even as a starting point for discussion, essentially kill the bill before it’s out of the chute? "It does send a message that it’s a bad idea," says Frank. "But I want to send a message."

No comments:

Commentators, Subjects and Cases