Marriage in Vermont: Three Progressive Lessons

Huffington Post
April 20, 2009

The Yale Law Journal's Aaron Zelinsky discusses the Vermont Legislature voting to extend marriage to gay couples in the context of federalism, saying, "Federalism should play a critical role in progressive strategy." [Link]

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A strange dual citizenship for gay couples

The Boston Globe
April 17, 2009

The so-called Defense of Marriage Act passed in the panic of 1996 when it looked as if Hawaii would become the first state with gay marriage. The purpose was as obvious and discriminatory as Representative Henry Hyde's declaration that DOMA was to express "disapprobation" for homosexuality.... Much has changed since 1996. Even former representative Bob Barr, who wrote DOMA, now disavows it. So what do you say about an out-of-date law that enforces an identity crisis? What do you say about a law that "defends" marriage by denying it? The winds are blowing, but in a very different direction. [Link]

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Tax Day Reminds Same-Sex Couples of Inequality

The Huffington Post
April 16, 2009

Naomi G. Goldberg and Gary J. Gates write about the multiple ways in which US tax law disadvantages same-sex couples. [Link]

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Congressional Leaders Mull Partial DOMA Repeal

April 14, 2009

Discussions around repealing a portion of the so-called Defense of Marriage Act that prohibits the federal government from recognizing same-sex couples' marriages have heated up in the wake of recent legal challenges filed and the addition of two new states legalizing same-sex marriages. [Link]

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Obama administration mum on DOMA challenge

Bay Windows
March 4, 2009

Evan Wolfson, one of the pioneers in the marriage equality movement, called on Obama to make good on his promise to repeal the DOMA, regardless of the administration's legal response to the suit. "I think we’re just going to have to wait and see what the government says, both whether they choose to defend this discriminatory law and, if so, how?" said Wolfson. "Whatever they decide to do in court they can compensate for by moving forward on the Hill as they promised they would do." [Link]

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OP-ED: This Is the Way the Culture Wars End

The New York Times
February 21, 2009
William Saletan urges President Obama to move toward federal recognition of marriage for gay couples: "The cultural imprimatur of marriage makes the gravity of the bond stronger than a civil union or domestic partnership [...] We should promote and favor marriage, regardless of orientation." [Link]

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Voice for Equality: Ron Dellums

Ron Dellums has served as mayor of Oakland, California since 2007. He was previously a member of the U.S. House of Representatives, where he served on the House Committee on the District of Columbia and the House Armed Services Committee.

On June 16, 2008, Dellums officiated in the City Council chambers at Oakland's first weddings of same-sex couples. He said, "[Marriage] is a fundamental right to which all people are entitled and I am proud that I can officiate the eternal unions of these Oakland couples."

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Rulings on Gay Couples’ Benefits Question Defense of Marriage Act

Los Angeles Times
February 6, 2009
A federal judge ruled that the husband of a gay Calif. man should receive the same benefits that the spouse of a straight employee of his department would be afforded. Based on this and related cases, legal analysts speculate that DOMA could one day be ruled unconstitutional. [Link]

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Federal judge rules denial of health coverage to same-sex spouse unconstitutional

Los Angeles Times Blog
February 5, 2009
A federal judge has deemed unconstitutional the government's denial of healthcare coverage and other benefits to the same-sex spouse of a Los Angeles public defender, calling into question the validity of the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act. [Link]

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Civil unions a minefield for Obama

Washington Blade
January 30, 2009
Evan Wolfson said he was optimistic about the Obama proposal and hopeful that it would be pushed as a package that includes the repeal of DOMA. Like Frank, Pizer and Anders, Wolfson said it would be a mistake to push for a marriage rights bill that doesn’t include same-sex couples that are actually married. "Let’s not begin by fighting amongst ourselves,” he said. “Let’s begin by asking for what we deserve." [Link]

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