"Both sides agree that our plaintiffs have taken on the commitments of marriage, played by the rules, paid into the system, and been denied benefits because of DOMA," says GLAD Legal Director Gary Buseck.I wonder if this case will be strengthened by the NInth Circuit orders we discussed on Friday. One thing we know for sure: this won't end soon. (Update: Lawdork has commentary.)
"Now we're asking the court to say once and for all that the federal government must end its blatant double standard of providing rights and protections to all married couples except gay and lesbian married couples."
Next, there's the ongoing saga of Perry, which is the case challenging Prop 8 in Federal Court. A while ago, the Judge ordered the Prop 8 supporters to release their documents. Seems a big part of the case relies on whether or not the proponents were motivated by simple animus, or by actual concern about marriage and children. They don't want to turn the papers over, and have appealed up to the Ninth Circuit. Yet another order came out last week demanding that, in the absence of a stay, they have to turn them over. A great blog to follow this is Prop 8 & the Right to Marry which is based on legal commentary. I've book marked it in the information blogroll, on the left sidebar.
Other news: The Domestic Partners Benefits ad Obligations Act (DPBO) passed out of markup Wednesday. A description of the arguments pro and con here. As we discussed last summer, This would allow federal employees with legal same sex partners to have access to proper employment benefits, like health care and pensions. Ironically, however, because of DOMA, those who are legally married, rather than DP'd, might not have relief under this act...like Mr Levenson in the case we discussed Friday. So it enshrines a separate category of not-quite for GLBT people.