Is a case in California setting up DOMA for overturn?
A federal judge in California has ruled that a federal appeals judge has no power to order the U.S. government to provide health benefits to the same-sex spouse of a court employee, but went on to invite a constitutional challenge to the law that mandates a denial of such benefits — the federal Defense of Marriage Act. The judge also indicated that the challenge probably would succeed.
In other words, the appellant, a court employee seeking benefits for her partner, has the wrong procedural posture. She gets until April 15 to file an amended complaint for review of the constitutional grounds of the action preventing the benefits.
With Lambda Legal arguing the case on her behalf and praising the judges dicta that she has a “clear right to relief,” I have no doubt that the case will be amended and refiled.
Stay tuned and remember: if you can’t win at the voting booth, you might be able to win in court, instead.
- U.S. resists gay DOMA claim (scotusblog.com)
- U.S. says DOMA ban invalid (scotusblog.com)
- -Democrats in Congress Push Bill to Repeal DOMA (answersforthefaith.com)
- Possible Demise of DOMA (lawprofessors.typepad.com)