DOMA struck down
Published by jwettschreck on Wednesday, June 26th, 2013
DOMA has been struck down by the U.S. Supreme Court.
5-4:DOMA is unconstitutional as a deprivation of the equal liberty of persons that is protected by the Fifth Amendment.
The “Defense of Marriage Act,” or DOMA, was passed in 1996 by Congress and signed into law by President Bill Clinton. It has two main functions. The part being challenged is called “Section Three,” which prevents the federal government from recognizing any marriages between gay or lesbian couples for the purpose of federal laws or programs, even if those couples are considered legally married by their home state. The other significant part makes it so that individual states do not legally have to acknowledge the relationships of gay and lesbian couples who were married in another state. Only the section that deals with federal recognition is being currently challenged in court.
From the SCOTUS liveblog: Justice Scalia is reading from his dissent right now. The Court’s opinion both in explaining its jurisdiction and its decision “both spring from the same diseased root: an exalted notion of the role of this court in American democratic society.
The Court has not yet released the decision in Prop 8, but there is language in Windsor telegraphing that the Court will dismiss on standing.
Watch for further updates
Washington (CNN) — President Obama’s recess appointments to a federal agency– made without Senate confirmation– will be reviewed by the Supreme Court, the court announced Monday. It will mark a major constitutional test of executive power.
At issue is whether three people named to the National Labor Relations Board lack authority because the presidential appointments were made while the Senate was technically in a “pro forma” session during the 2011-12 winter holiday break.
The case sets up a high-stakes Supreme Court fight between the other two branches of government. Oral arguments will be held in public session later this year or early next.
Republican and Democratic lawmakers in the past have used the “virtual Congress” tactic to block unilateral appointments by the president when the Senate is away.
Instead of making a ruling, they simply vacated the lower court’s decision and sent it back for a “do over”. Lame.
Supreme Court holds off on major affirmative action decision
Updated at 11:20 a.m. ET
Avoiding any major ruling on the hotbutton issue of affirmative action in school admissions, the Supreme Court on Monday sent the case Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin back to the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals. The narrow ruling essentially tees up the issue for the court to reconsider next year, when it will review another affirmative action case.
In a seven to one opinion, the court argued the lower court used the wrong standards to evaluate the Texas college’s admissions policies. Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote for the majority that the Fifth Circuit should not have given UT Austin as much deference on the matter of whether its limited approach to racial considerations met the standard set by the Supreme Court in 2003. That year, in Grutter v. Bollinger, the court rejected the use of racial quotas but said that schools could consider race as part of a “holistic” review of a student’s application.