Yesterday, the Second Circuit Court of Appeals in New York in a 2-1 decision found that Section 3 of DOMA is unconstitutional. If you are interested in reading a detailed explanation of the law in the case, Prop 8 Trial Tracker has a great piece.
I have written about this specific challenge to DOMA before because the story behind the challenge is so touching. If you aren’t familiar with DOMA and why this case is important, see my previous post Why DOMA Matters.
A constitutional scholar at The Volokh Conspiracy, Jonathan Adler, writes that he was persuaded by the arguments Judge Jacobs lays out in his opinion for why the federal government doesn’t have good reason to define marriage like it does in DOMA. Adler also suggests that the decision makes it more likely the Supreme Court will take the DOMA case this term.
We still don’t know what the Supreme Court is going to do with the DOMA challenges. We are waiting to see if they decide to hear the case. For now, the decision by the Second Circuit brings us one step closer to true equality in California. If DOMA is struck down then hopefully Congress will act soon to extend federal benefits to domestic partners. Stay tuned for updates as things progress.