Is this our chance at our Constitution’s promise of Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness?
By Cathy Kristofferson, March 22, 2013.
Next week on Tuesday March 25th and then Wednesday the 26th the Supreme Court will hear the ‘two marriage cases’ deciding if the gay community will be allowed to enjoy the same rights, freedoms and opportunities provided by marriage as everyone else. The DOMA case, now called U.S. v. Windsor, and the Prop8 case banning marriage equality in CA, now called Holllingsworth v. Perry. both question the constitutionality of denying those same rights, freedoms and opportunities. Both cases, individually and together, provide a myriad of potential outcomes.
Hollingsworth v. Perry challenges the Constitutionality of the marriage equality ban put in place in the California Constitution by the majority vote received on the 2004 Proposition 8.
U.S. v. Windsor challenges Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act’s ability to violate the Constitutional guarantee of Equal Protection under the Law provided by the 14th Amendment. Edie Windsor, widow of Thea Spyer, was charged estate taxes which would not have occurred if the Federal Government recognized their marriage as it does opposite gender marriages.
The folks at Third Way have created a great visual for all options for both cases.
Hollingsworth v. Perry:
U.S. v. Windsor
AFTER reviewing the options above – questions are not covered and some remain unanswered – so we are not sure that this graph covers all instances. Also the graph presupposes in one instance if the ruling is that the federal government will defer to state’s definition of who is married. It says ” Gay couples who are legally married in their own state will be treated as married by the federal government”… as such. However what if a couple is married and then lives in a State that does not recognize same-sex marriage – will that couple still be covered by Federal law. The graph does not deal with that. To my way of thinking the Federal government will still have to recognize the marriage for all purposes when the couple lives in a different state, if DOMA is unconstitutional. The graph seems to suggest that the couple will have to be married in their own State. I think that is misleading.