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Federal judge rules against Obama admin., allows DOMA suit over federal benefits to proceed

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A case brought by married same-sex couples in California could provide another judicial blow to DOMA:

In a victory for gay rights advocates, a federal judge has ruled that state employees in California can sue for discrimination over the federal government's exclusion of their same-sex spouses from a long-term health care program.

U.S. District Judge Claudia Wilken of Oakland denied an Obama administration request to dismiss the suit Tuesday and signaled that she is likely to overturn provisions of the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act, which denies federal benefits to same-sex couples.
This ruling from Wilken was only on the Obama administration's motion to dismiss the case, but as the San Francisco Chronicle's article shows, the Judge is taking aim at DOMA:
But Wilken said the 1996 law actually changed the status quo by "robbing states of the power to allow same-sex civil marriages that will be recognized under federal law."

She also rejected arguments that the law's sponsors put forth in 1996, that the legislation was necessary to promote procreation and preserve heterosexual marriage.

"Marriage has never been contingent on having children," Wilken said, and denying federal benefits to same-sex couples "does not encourage heterosexual marriage."

She said sponsors' "moral rejection of homosexuality" had been obvious in congressional debate. The U.S. Supreme Court has found that bias against gays is an unconstitutional justification for passing a law, Wilken noted.
This case gives the Obama administration an opportunity to do the right thing. So far, in the courts, they haven't. The President should say that DOMA is unconstitutional. He knows it is -- or should be.

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