Windy City Media Group Frontpage News Home
CELEBRATING 28+ YEARS OF Lesbian Gay Bisexual and Transgender NEWS

Search Gay News Articles
Advanced Search
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2014-08-27
Download Issue
  News Index       Archives   About WCMG    Publications    Bars & Clubs     Calendar   Videos   Advertisers    OUT! Guide    Classifieds   AIDS @ 32
 Local | National | World | Politics | Obits | Profiles | Views | Entertainment | Theater | Dance | Music | Film | Art | Books | TV/Gossip
 Travel | History | Marriage | Youth | Trans | Lesbian | Celebrations | Food | Nightlife | Sports | Health | Real Estate | Autos | Pets | Crime

Broadway in Chicago puts on free summer show Broadway in Chicago

puts on free summer show
The hill was alive with the sound of music in the Jay ...

Browse Gay News Index   Browse Gay News Archives
  Windy City Times

DoJ comes out swinging against DOMA
News update posted Sunday, July 2, 2011
by Lisa Keen, Keen News Service
2011-07-06

facebook twitter del.icio.us stumble upon digg google +1 reddit email


The Department of Justice ( DoJ ) , on July 1, recommended a federal appeals court in California dismiss a motion promoted by the House of Representatives to dismiss a challenge to the Defense of Marriage Act ( DOMA ) .

The argument came during Golinski v. Office of Personnel Management ( OPM ) , a case filed by Lambda Legal Defense in which the DoJ initially tried to dismiss the case itself.

Williams Institute Legal Director Jenny Pizer, a former Lambda attorney, noted that, "while this step is fully consistent with the position taken back in February, it was not at all assumed that the Administration would participate actively in the pending DOMA cases."

Attorney General Eric Holder, on Feb. 23, sent a letter to House Speaker John Boehner, alerting him that the administration considers Section 3 of DOMA to be unconstitutional. Section 3 states that the federal government will not, for any federal purposes, recognize any same-sex marriage. Holder's letter said the administration would not defend it beyond the First Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals. ( The First Circuit, noted Holder, has said that laws treating people differently on the basis of sexual orientation should be examined using the lowest level of judicial scrutiny—rational basis—under which almost any reason can pass muster. )

Holder's letter said the administration believes laws disfavoring persons based on sexual orientation should have to pass the most stringent judicial review: heightened scrutiny. Also, it said the administration would argue so in two cases challenging DOMA in the 2nd Circuit.

Golinski is in the Ninth Circuit. Although the DoJ acknowledges that the Ninth Circuit, like the First, has previously held that rational-basis review is appropriate for sexual orientation, "we respectfully submit that this decision no longer withstands scrutiny."

To justify its argument, the DoJ noted that, in 2003 with Lawrence v. Texas, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down laws prohibiting private consensual sex between same-sex partners. Also, it said "gay and lesbian individuals" fit the bill as a long-oppressed minority—or suspect class. It has been frequently targeted by discrimination, it is a class with limited political power and it is a class defined by an immutable trait that bears no relationship to the individuals' ability to contribute to and participate in society—criteria for a suspect class.

The brief argues that there is no justification for DOMA's treating same-sex couples differently and that the record surrounding the law "evidences the kind of animus and stereotype-based type thinking that the Equal Protection Clause is designed to guard against.

"The Obama Administration is putting very welcome additional flesh on the important bones of Attorney General Holder's February letter to John Boehner explaining why the Administration won't defend DOMA any longer."

Signing the July 1 DoJ brief were Michael Hertz, a deputy assistant attorney general; Melinda Haag, a U.S. attorney; and Arthur Goldberg, assistant branch director.

Pizer said the Hertz brief "gives a detailed and immensely persuasive examination of why antigay laws should be subjected to rigorous constitutional review, including with a very substantial documenting of the systematic mistreatment of gay people by government, the religious and other legally improper reasons for that mistreatment, and further reinforcement of the point that the needs of children are served by equal treatment of all married parents, rather than federal discrimination against some of them."

Human Rights Campaign President Joe Solmonese said the brief "represents real leadership from the Obama administration and further hastens the day in which we will leave this odious law in the dustbin of history."

The brief—which typically takes weeks, if not months, to complete—was filed as President Obama was coming under increasing pressure from the LGBT community and the media to speak out in favor of same-sex marriages and marriage equality laws.

In Golinski, an employee of the Ninth Circuit federal appeals court, is suing to obtain health coverage for her spouse. The federal court provides such benefits to the spouses of straight employees and was prepared to offer them to Golinski. However, the OPM, headed by openly gay appointee John Berry, instructed the court's insurance company, Blue Cross/Blue Shield, to deny the claim, citing DOMA.

DOMA, enacted in 1996, prohibits any federal entity from recognizing a marriage license granted to a same-sex couple.

In March, a federal district court judge granted the DoJ's initial request that Golinski's lawsuit be dismissed, agreeing that OPM had a duty to enforce DOMA that trumped the Ninth Circuit's agreement to provide benefits to Golinski.

Lambda has filed an amended complaint and the DoJ brief was submitted to that pending litigation in the U.S. District Court for Northern California. The House's Bipartisan Legal Advisory Group has filed a motion to intervene in Golinski to defend DOMA.

�2011 Keen News Service. All rights reserved.


facebook twitter del.icio.us stumble upon digg google +1 reddit email




Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.

Lambda: Stop HIV-based prosecutions due to DOJ guidance 2014-07-27
DoJ to collect stops and arrest data to curb racial bias 2014-04-28
DOJ: Same-sex spouses of veterans will have benefits 2013-09-04
DOJ to present at Wisconsin LGBT Pride gathering 2013-06-19
Lambda statement on DoJ petition to the Supreme Court in DOMA case 2012-07-03
Canada DoJ triggers marriage scare 2012-01-18
Top DoJ official talks LGBT progress at the Center 2011-09-21
Court says no to DOJ on DADT, SU responds 2011-07-13
Obama's DOJ tries to stop court from forcing Don't Ask, Don't Tell's quick demise 2011-07-13
9th Circuit gives DOJ 10 days to step aside on DADT 2011-07-13
DOJ delivers powerful critique of DOMA in Lambda Legal case 2011-07-06
Boehner endorses cutting DOJ funding to defend bias 2011-04-20
U.S. House holds DOMA-DoJ hearing 2011-04-20
Green card applications for married gays on hold awaiting DOJ guidance 2011-03-30
DOJ on DOMA: 'Sexual orientation should be subject to heightened scrutiny' 2011-03-02
Obama's DOJ stepping back on 2 DOMA cases 2011-02-25
SLDN statement on DOJ motion to stay DADT suspension 2010-10-13
DoJ will appeal DOMA cases 2010-10-13
DoJ on DADT injunction: Defense and Congress need more time 2010-09-22
Reactions to DoJ brief 2009-08-19
DoJ switches on DOMA 2009-08-19
Statement from NCLR ED Kate Kendell on DOJ 2009-08-12
DOJ TURNAROUND ON SMELT 2009-08-12
DOJ Pride, Chapter II: Justice Retreats Slightly 2003-06-18
UPDATE: Change in Justice Ruling Banning Employee Gay Pride Event 2003-06-11





Copyright © 2014 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
the online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 



 

Attendees board 'Soul Train' at ALCC event
 
DINING Freshii's Alex Blair on expanding empire
 
Michael Jackson tribute Aug. 28-30 in Gary, Indiana
 
Way-out Wizard World: costumes, characters, artists
 
Before we go moving the Pride Parade...
 
Windy City Times Current DownloadNightspots Current DownloadQueercast Current Download
Windy City Media Group BlogsJoin Our Email List!Donate Now








  News Index       Archives   About WCMG    Publications    Bars & Clubs     Calendar   Videos   Advertisers    OUT! Guide    Classifieds   AIDS @ 32
 Local | National | World | Politics | Obits | Profiles | Views | Entertainment | Theater | Dance | Music | Film | Art | Books | TV/Gossip
 Travel | History | Marriage | Youth | Trans | Lesbian | Celebrations | Food | Nightlife | Sports | Health | Real Estate | Autos | Pets | Crime



About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video      News Videos      Nightspots Videos      Entertainment Videos      Queercast Videos      Comedy Videos     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group produces Windy City Queercast, & publishes Windy City Times,
The Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community,
Nightspots, Out! Resource Guide, and Identity.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.