Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Another DOMA case fast-tracks to SCOTUS

Edie Windsor is 82 years old and in poor health.  She married her partner Thea in Canada and her marriage was recognized by NY State.  But when Thea died, the IRS socked Edie with a massive estate tax bill, because the government refused to recognized Edie's marriage.

Having won in the lower court, Edie's case is now on appeal directly to the SCOTUS, bypassing the 2nd circuit, and joining several other cases already on appeal.

"The constitutional injury inflicted on Edie should be remedied within her lifetime," said Kaplan, a partner at Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison, in a statement. 
Windsor's petition comes after three other cases were petitioned in late June and early July by the Justice Department and the House Bipartisan Legal Advisory Group (BLAG), controlled by House Republican leadership, regarding DOMA's constitutionality, albeit for different reasons. The Obama administration instructed the Justice Department to stop enforcing DOMA in February 2011 declaring it unconstitutional. As a result, the BLAG has sought to defend DOMA with the hope that it will be found constitutional by the courts. 
Regardless of the whether the Supreme Court decides to consider Windsor's case, oral arguments are scheduled to begin in the Second Circuit Court of Appeals in September.

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