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State seeks to overhaul Defense of Marriage Act

July 13, 2009 by  

State seeks to overhaul Defense of Marriage ActThe Massachusetts attorney general Martha Coakley is taking the federal government to court in an effort to challenge the section of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) which denies federal benefits to same-sex spouses.

DOMA, which bans the federal government from recognizing same-sex marriage, was passed by Congress in 1996, and Massachusetts is the first state to challenge its provisions.

In 2003, it also became the first state to grant gay couples the right to marry.

The suit claims the act interferes with states’ rights to regulate marriage. At the moment, six states allow gay marriage but spouses cannot take advantage of federal benefits like joint tax filing, Social Security paid to survivors and guaranteed leave from work to care for a sick spouse.

While supported by gay rights groups, the effort has been criticized by many conservative organizations.

Among them is the Family Research Council whose president, Tony Perkins, warned that "[federal] taxpayers face the very real possibility of being forced to subsidize same-sex ‘marriages’."

He has also called on the Justice Department to continue to defend DOMA against "frivolous" lawsuits.

Facing intense criticism from gay rights groups over what they saw as his inaction on the DOMA as well as the "don’t ask, don’t tell" policy, President Obama signed a memorandum last month granting job-related benefits to the same-sex partners of federal employees. ADNFCR-1961-ID-19263298-ADNFCR

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  • Steve

    Actually, Massachusetts is rebelling against the decency of the majority of Americans and the federal government. Why don’t they look at seeing if Canada wants another province or better yet, why don’t they just behave?!

  • Gabarus

    Steve : As a Canadian, we are uninterested in adopting an entire American state. Far too much chance of having people like you become citizens. Personally, I find your sheer arrogance, and your holier than thou attitude to be what is indecent, and immoral. You come on here, spouting anger, and proposing that an entire state leave your country. Do you really think that’s helpful to anyone? Why not try getting out there and getting to know a few gay families, and see for yourself that they are no different from your own. Same problems and headaches, same emotional attachment, same love for their children. And once you’ve actually done that, come back, render an informed opinion, rather than ignorant junk.

  • TrueBleuCA

    Among them is the Family Research Council whose president, Tony Perkins, warned that “[federal] taxpayers face the very real possibility of being forced to subsidize same-sex ‘marriages’.”

    What do you think all the law-abiding, tax-paying gay and lesbian couples are doing every April 15th? We are subsidizing opposite-sex marriages! Equal simply means Equal! It’ not rocket science!

  • FarRightWinger

    Martha, Martha, you (WORDS REMOVED FOR OFFENSIVE CONTENT) just will make the world a better place.

    • Gabarus

      How mature. What are you, five?

  • Rich

    Wow this is probably the best news I have read about this issue period. For the record I am not gay, I am happily married to my wife of 12 years, but am fully for equal rights for all. Come join us ‘breeders’ and be as miserable as we are lol.


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