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Another federal judge strikes down DOMA

by Brad A. Greenberg

May 25, 2012 | 5:02 pm

In other same-sex marriage news, a second federal judge has overturned the Defense of Marriage Act as unconstitutional. The San Francisco Chronicle reports:

The decision by U.S. District Judge Claudia Wilken of Oakland was the second by a Bay Area judge this year to strike down the Defense of Marriage Act, the 1996 law withholding more than 1,000 federal benefits - such as joint tax filing, Social Security survivor payments and immigration sponsorship - from gays and lesbians legally married under state law.

Wilken also overturned another 1996 law that denied federal tax benefits to long-term health insurance plans for state employees if they included domestic partners.

That law, like the Defense of Marriage Act, was based on “moral condemnation and social disapprobation of same-sex couples,” she said. She cited assertions during congressional debate that same-sex domestic partnership was “an attack on the family” and would “undermine the traditional moral values that are the bedrock of this nation.”

Read the rest here and Judge Wilken’s full opinion here.

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