The Obama administration filed a court brief supporting lesbian Karen Golinski's claim for health insurance, as a federal employee, for her same-sex spouse, currently denied by the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). The Justice Department argued that DOMA was passed by Congress in hostility toward homosexuals.
For background, read Activist California Judge Challenges Obama to Advance Gay Agenda and also read White House Torpedoed Marriage from Start
-- From "Administration supports lesbian employee's case" by Sudhin Thanawala, Associated Press 7/4/11
"The official legislative record makes plain that DOMA Section 3 was motivated in large part by animus toward gay and lesbian individuals and their intimate relationships, and Congress identified no other interest that is materially advanced by Section 3," the brief reads, referring to the section in the act that defines marriage as being between a man and a woman.
Though the administration has previously said it will not defend the marriage act, the brief is the first court filing in which it urges the court to find the law unconstitutional, said Tobias Barrington Wolff, a law professor at the University of Pennsylvania.
The brief argues that gays and lesbians have been subject to a history of discrimination by federal, state and local governments and private parties. It also lays out the administration's position that sexual orientation is an "immutable characteristic," that gays and lesbians are minorities with limited political power and that sexual orientation has no bearing on someone's ability to contribute to society and advances no legitimate policy interest.
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