Supreme Court strikes down DOMA

Yahoo News

The Supreme Court handed down the decision on June 26, 2013 to strike down the Defense of Marriage Act which entitles legally married gay couples to claim the same federal benefits as do straight couples.

New York City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, left, and Edie Windsor, plaintiff in United States v. Windsor, join members of the LGBT community and their supporters as they gather to celebrate two decisions by the U.S. Supreme Court, one to invalidate parts of the Defense of Marriage Act and another to uphold a lower court ruling that struck down California's controversial Proposition 8, during a rally in New York's Greenwich Village, Wednesday, June 26, 2013. (AP Photo/Jason DeCrow)
Gay marriage
New York City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, left, and Edie Windsor, plaintiff in United States v. Windsor, join members of the LGBT community and their supporters as they gather to celebrate two decisions by the U.S. Supreme Court, one to invalidate parts of the Defense of Marriage Act and another to uphold a lower court ruling that struck down California's controversial Proposition 8, during a rally in New York's Greenwich Village, Wednesday, June 26, 2013. (AP Photo/Jason DeCrow)
Pam Grey, left, and Zoe Dunning kiss, reacting to the U.S. Supreme Court's ruling on gay marriage in California, at San Francisco's City Hall on Wednesday, June 26, 2013. Dunning, who wed Grey, a federal employee, in 2008, will now be entitled to federal benefits. The justices issued two 5-4 rulings in their final session of the term. One decision wiped away part of a federal anti-gay marriage law that has kept legally married same-sex couples from receiving tax, health and pension benefits. The other was a technical legal ruling that said nothing at all about same-sex marriage, but left in place a trial court's declaration that California's Proposition 8 is unconstitutional. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)
gay marriage
Pam Grey, left, and Zoe Dunning kiss, reacting to the U.S. Supreme Court's ruling on gay marriage in California, at San Francisco's City Hall on Wednesday, June 26, 2013. Dunning, who wed Grey, a federal employee, in 2008, will now be entitled to federal benefits. The justices issued two 5-4 rulings in their final session of the term. One decision wiped away part of a federal anti-gay marriage law that has kept legally married same-sex couples from receiving tax, health and pension benefits. The other was a technical legal ruling that said nothing at all about same-sex marriage, but left in place a trial court's declaration that California's Proposition 8 is unconstitutional. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)
A rally in support of gay marriage infront of the Supreme Court building in Washington, DC, moments before the Supreme Court decision came down against the Defense of Marriage Act on June 26, 2013. (Photo by Chris Moody/Yahoo!News)
gay marriage
A rally in support of gay marriage infront of the Supreme Court building in Washington, DC, moments before the Supreme Court decision came down against the Defense of Marriage Act on June 26, 2013. (Photo by Chris Moody/Yahoo!News)
A rally in support of gay marriage infront of the Supreme Court building in Washington, DC, moments before the Supreme Court decision came down against the Defense of Marriage Act on June 26, 2013. (Photo by Chris Moody/Yahoo!News)
gay marriage
A rally in support of gay marriage infront of the Supreme Court building in Washington, DC, moments before the Supreme Court decision came down against the Defense of Marriage Act on June 26, 2013. (Photo by Chris Moody/Yahoo!News)
A rally in support of gay marriage infront of the Supreme Court building in Washington, DC, moments before the Supreme Court decision came down against the Defense of Marriage Act on June 26, 2013. (Photo by Chris Moody/Yahoo!News)
gay marriage
A rally in support of gay marriage infront of the Supreme Court building in Washington, DC, moments before the Supreme Court decision came down against the Defense of Marriage Act on June 26, 2013. (Photo by Chris Moody/Yahoo!News)
A rally in support of gay marriage infront of the Supreme Court building in Washington, DC, moments before the Supreme Court decision came down against the Defense of Marriage Act on June 26, 2013. (Photo by Chris Moody/Yahoo!News)
gay marriage
A rally in support of gay marriage infront of the Supreme Court building in Washington, DC, moments before the Supreme Court decision came down against the Defense of Marriage Act on June 26, 2013. (Photo by Chris Moody/Yahoo!News)
­Sue Rochman, left, and Robin Romdalvik kiss, reacting to the U.S. Supreme Court's ruling on gay marriage in California, at San Francisco's City Hall on Wednesday, June 26, 2013. The couple, accompanied by their son Maddox Rochman-Romdalvik. The justices issued two 5-4 rulings in their final session of the term. One decision wiped away part of a federal anti-gay marriage law that has kept legally married same-sex couples from receiving tax, health and pension benefits. The other was a technical legal ruling that said nothing at all about same-sex marriage, but left in place a trial court's declaration that California's Proposition 8 is unconstitutional. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)
gay marriage
­Sue Rochman, left, and Robin Romdalvik kiss, reacting to the U.S. Supreme Court's ruling on gay marriage in California, at San Francisco's City Hall on Wednesday, June 26, 2013. The couple, accompanied by their son Maddox Rochman-Romdalvik. The justices issued two 5-4 rulings in their final session of the term. One decision wiped away part of a federal anti-gay marriage law that has kept legally married same-sex couples from receiving tax, health and pension benefits. The other was a technical legal ruling that said nothing at all about same-sex marriage, but left in place a trial court's declaration that California's Proposition 8 is unconstitutional. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)
WASHINGTON, DC - JUNE 26: American University students Sharon Burk (L) and Mollie Wagoner (R) embrace after hearing that the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) is unconstitutional at the Supreme Court, June 26, 2013 in Washington, DC. The high court ruled to strike down DOMA and determined the California's proposition 8 ban on same-sex marriage was not properly before them, declining to overturn the lower court's striking down of the law. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)
gay marriage
WASHINGTON, DC - JUNE 26: American University students Sharon Burk (L) and Mollie Wagoner (R) embrace after hearing that the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) is unconstitutional at the Supreme Court, June 26, 2013 in Washington, DC. The high court ruled to strike down DOMA and determined the California's proposition 8 ban on same-sex marriage was not properly before them, declining to overturn the lower court's striking down of the law. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - JUNE 26: Elana Kessler (L) speaks with her mother on the phone on the steps of the Supreme court while learning of favorable rulings issued by the court on same sex marriage cases June 26, 2013 in Washington, DC. The high court ruled to strike down DOMA and determined the California's proposition 8 ban on same-sex marriage was not properly before them, declining to overturn the lower court's striking down of the law. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)
gay marriage
WASHINGTON, DC - JUNE 26: Elana Kessler (L) speaks with her mother on the phone on the steps of the Supreme court while learning of favorable rulings issued by the court on same sex marriage cases June 26, 2013 in Washington, DC. The high court ruled to strike down DOMA and determined the California's proposition 8 ban on same-sex marriage was not properly before them, declining to overturn the lower court's striking down of the law. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)
Attorney David Boies, co-lead counsel of the legal team challenging California's same-sex marriage ban, leaves the Supreme Court in Washington, Wednesday, June 26, 2013. In a major victory for gay rights, the Supreme Court on Wednesday struck down a provision of a federal law denying federal benefits to married gay couples and cleared the way for the resumption of same-sex marriage in California. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
gay marriage
Attorney David Boies, co-lead counsel of the legal team challenging California's same-sex marriage ban, leaves the Supreme Court in Washington, Wednesday, June 26, 2013. In a major victory for gay rights, the Supreme Court on Wednesday struck down a provision of a federal law denying federal benefits to married gay couples and cleared the way for the resumption of same-sex marriage in California. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
Supporters of gay marriage embrace outside the Supreme Court in Washington, Wednesday, June 26, 2013, after the court cleared the way for same-sex marriage in California by holding that defenders of California's gay marriage ban did not have the right to appeal lower court rulings striking down the ban. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
gay marriage
Supporters of gay marriage embrace outside the Supreme Court in Washington, Wednesday, June 26, 2013, after the court cleared the way for same-sex marriage in California by holding that defenders of California's gay marriage ban did not have the right to appeal lower court rulings striking down the ban. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
Plaintiffs in Hollingsworth v. Perry, the California Proposition 8 case, react on steps of the Supreme Court in Washington, Wednesday, June 26, 2013, after justices cleared the way for the resumption of same-sex marriage in California. From left are, Jeff Zarrillo, and his partner Paul Katami, attorney David Boies, and Sandy Stier and her partner Kris Perry. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
gay marriage
Plaintiffs in Hollingsworth v. Perry, the California Proposition 8 case, react on steps of the Supreme Court in Washington, Wednesday, June 26, 2013, after justices cleared the way for the resumption of same-sex marriage in California. From left are, Jeff Zarrillo, and his partner Paul Katami, attorney David Boies, and Sandy Stier and her partner Kris Perry. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
Same sex couple Lisa Kirk, left, and Lena Brancatelli, right, celebrate on the phone with Brancatelli's mother after learning the U.S. Supreme Court's ruling on gay marriage in California Wednesday, June 26, 2013 at their home in San Jose, Calif. The justices issued two 5-4 rulings in their final session of the term. One decision wiped away part of a federal anti-gay marriage law that has kept legally married same-sex couples from receiving tax, health and pension benefits. The other was a technical legal ruling that said nothing at all about same-sex marriage, but left in place a trial court's declaration that California's Proposition 8 is unconstitutional. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)
Gay marriage
Same sex couple Lisa Kirk, left, and Lena Brancatelli, right, celebrate on the phone with Brancatelli's mother after learning the U.S. Supreme Court's ruling on gay marriage in California Wednesday, June 26, 2013 at their home in San Jose, Calif. The justices issued two 5-4 rulings in their final session of the term. One decision wiped away part of a federal anti-gay marriage law that has kept legally married same-sex couples from receiving tax, health and pension benefits. The other was a technical legal ruling that said nothing at all about same-sex marriage, but left in place a trial court's declaration that California's Proposition 8 is unconstitutional. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)
Julia Tate, left, kisses her wife, Lisa McMillin, as they read results of Supreme Court decisions regarding gay rights on Wednesday, June 26, 2013, in Nashville, Tenn. The justices issued two 5-4 rulings in their final session of the term. One decision wiped away part of a federal anti-gay marriage law that has kept legally married same-sex couples from receiving tax, health and pension benefits. The other was a technical legal ruling that said nothing at all about same-sex marriage, but left in place a trial court's declaration that California's Proposition 8 is unconstitutional. McMillin holds the couple's son, Luke. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)
Gay marriage
Julia Tate, left, kisses her wife, Lisa McMillin, as they read results of Supreme Court decisions regarding gay rights on Wednesday, June 26, 2013, in Nashville, Tenn. The justices issued two 5-4 rulings in their final session of the term. One decision wiped away part of a federal anti-gay marriage law that has kept legally married same-sex couples from receiving tax, health and pension benefits. The other was a technical legal ruling that said nothing at all about same-sex marriage, but left in place a trial court's declaration that California's Proposition 8 is unconstitutional. McMillin holds the couple's son, Luke. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)
John Lewis, left, gets a kiss from his partner Stuart Gaffney as they embrace after the Supreme Court cleared the way for same-sex marriage in California at the office of San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee at City Hall in San Francisco, Wednesday, June 26, 2013. The justices issued two 5-4 rulings in their final session of the term. One decision wiped away part of a federal anti-gay marriage law that has kept legally married same-sex couples from receiving tax, health and pension benefits. The other was a technical legal ruling that said nothing at all about same-sex marriage, but left in place a trial court's declaration that California's Proposition 8 is unconstitutional. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)
Gay marriage
John Lewis, left, gets a kiss from his partner Stuart Gaffney as they embrace after the Supreme Court cleared the way for same-sex marriage in California at the office of San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee at City Hall in San Francisco, Wednesday, June 26, 2013. The justices issued two 5-4 rulings in their final session of the term. One decision wiped away part of a federal anti-gay marriage law that has kept legally married same-sex couples from receiving tax, health and pension benefits. The other was a technical legal ruling that said nothing at all about same-sex marriage, but left in place a trial court's declaration that California's Proposition 8 is unconstitutional. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)
tAmerican University students Sharon Burk, left, and Molly Wagner, embrace outside the Supreme Court in Washington, Wednesday, June 26, 2013, after the court cleared the way for same-sex marriage in California by holding that defenders of California's gay marriage ban did not have the right to appeal lower court rulings striking down the ban. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
Gay marriage
tAmerican University students Sharon Burk, left, and Molly Wagner, embrace outside the Supreme Court in Washington, Wednesday, June 26, 2013, after the court cleared the way for same-sex marriage in California by holding that defenders of California's gay marriage ban did not have the right to appeal lower court rulings striking down the ban. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
Michael Knaapen, left, and his husband John Becker, right, embrace outside the Supreme Court in Washington, Wednesday, June 26, 2013 after the court struck down a federal provision denying benefits to legally married gay couples. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
Gay marriage
Michael Knaapen, left, and his husband John Becker, right, embrace outside the Supreme Court in Washington, Wednesday, June 26, 2013 after the court struck down a federal provision denying benefits to legally married gay couples. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
mMichael Knaapen, left, and his husband John Becker, right, embrace outside the Supreme Court in Washington, Wednesday, June 26, 2013, after the court cleared the way for same-sex marriage in California by holding that defenders of California's gay marriage ban did not have the right to appeal lower court rulings striking down the ban. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
Gay marriage
mMichael Knaapen, left, and his husband John Becker, right, embrace outside the Supreme Court in Washington, Wednesday, June 26, 2013, after the court cleared the way for same-sex marriage in California by holding that defenders of California's gay marriage ban did not have the right to appeal lower court rulings striking down the ban. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
 American University students Sharon Burk, left, and Molly Wagner participate in a rally for rights for gay couples in front of the Supreme Court in Washington, Wednesday, June 26, 2013, after the court cleared the way for same-sex marriage in California by holding that defenders of California's gay marriage ban did not have the right to appeal lower court rulings striking down the ban. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
Gay marriage
 American University students Sharon Burk, left, and Molly Wagner participate in a rally for rights for gay couples in front of the Supreme Court in Washington, Wednesday, June 26, 2013, after the court cleared the way for same-sex marriage in California by holding that defenders of California's gay marriage ban did not have the right to appeal lower court rulings striking down the ban. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
WASHINGTON, DC - JUNE 26: Gay rights activists gather in front of the U.S. Supreme Court building, June 26, 2013 in Washington DC. Today the high court is expected to rule on California's Proposition 8, the controversial ballot initiative that defines marriage as between a man and a woman (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)
Gay marriage
WASHINGTON, DC - JUNE 26: Gay rights activists gather in front of the U.S. Supreme Court building, June 26, 2013 in Washington DC. Today the high court is expected to rule on California's Proposition 8, the controversial ballot initiative that defines marriage as between a man and a woman (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - JUNE 26: Gay rights supporter Jay Norris, of New York City, holds a U.S. flag outside the U.S. Supreme Court building on June 26, 2013 in Washington, DC. The high court is expected to rule on the DOMA and Prop 8 gay marriage cases. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)
gay marriage
WASHINGTON, DC - JUNE 26: Gay rights supporter Jay Norris, of New York City, holds a U.S. flag outside the U.S. Supreme Court building on June 26, 2013 in Washington, DC. The high court is expected to rule on the DOMA and Prop 8 gay marriage cases. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - JUNE 26: Gay rights supporter Vin Testa waves a rainbow flag outside the U.S. Supreme Court building on June 26, 2013 in Washington, DC. The high court is expected to rule on the DOMA and Prop 8 gay marriage cases. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)
Gay marriage
WASHINGTON, DC - JUNE 26: Gay rights supporter Vin Testa waves a rainbow flag outside the U.S. Supreme Court building on June 26, 2013 in Washington, DC. The high court is expected to rule on the DOMA and Prop 8 gay marriage cases. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - JUNE 26: Gay rights supporters Brian Sprague (L) and Charlie Ferrusi, from Albany, New York, hold a Human Rights flag outside U.S. Supreme Court building on June 26, 2013 in Washington, DC. The high court is expected to rule on the DOMA and Prop 8 gay marriage cases. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)
gay marriage
WASHINGTON, DC - JUNE 26: Gay rights supporters Brian Sprague (L) and Charlie Ferrusi, from Albany, New York, hold a Human Rights flag outside U.S. Supreme Court building on June 26, 2013 in Washington, DC. The high court is expected to rule on the DOMA and Prop 8 gay marriage cases. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - JUNE 25: Vin Testa, Ariel Prince and David Baker chant in support of marriage equality in front of the Supreme Court in Washington, DC on June 25, 2013. The court has yet to rule on the Defense of Marriage Act. (Photo by Bonnie Jo Mount/The Washington Post via Getty Images)
Gay Marriage
WASHINGTON, DC - JUNE 25: Vin Testa, Ariel Prince and David Baker chant in support of marriage equality in front of the Supreme Court in Washington, DC on June 25, 2013. The court has yet to rule on the Defense of Marriage Act. (Photo by Bonnie Jo Mount/The Washington Post via Getty Images)
Vin Testa arrives early to demonstrate in front of the U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday, June 26, 2013, in Washington, DC. The court is expected to rule on a case on the Defense of Marriage Act and other gay rights issues. (Pete Marovich/MCT)
Gay Marriage
Vin Testa arrives early to demonstrate in front of the U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday, June 26, 2013, in Washington, DC. The court is expected to rule on a case on the Defense of Marriage Act and other gay rights issues. (Pete Marovich/MCT)
Gay rights activist Bryce Romero, who works for the Human Rights Campaign, offers an enthusiastic high-five to visitors getting in line to enter the Supreme Court on a day when justices are expected to hand down major rulings on two gay marriage cases that could impact same-sex couples across the country, in Washington, Wednesday, June 26, 2013. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
Gay Marriage
Gay rights activist Bryce Romero, who works for the Human Rights Campaign, offers an enthusiastic high-five to visitors getting in line to enter the Supreme Court on a day when justices are expected to hand down major rulings on two gay marriage cases that could impact same-sex couples across the country, in Washington, Wednesday, June 26, 2013. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
Gay rights advocate Vin Testa waves a rainbow flag in front of the Supreme Court at sun up in Washington, Wednesday, June 26, 2013. Justices are expected to hand down major rulings on two gay marriage cases that could impact same-sex couples across the country. One is a challenge to California's voter-enacted ban on same-sex marriage. The other is a challenge to a provision of federal law that prevents legally married gay couples from receiving a range of tax, health and pension benefits. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
Gay rights advocate Vin Testa waves a rainbow flag in front of the Supreme Court at sun up in Washington, Wednesday, June 26, 2013. Justices are expected to hand down major rulings on two gay marriage cases that could impact same-sex couples across the country. One is a challenge to California's voter-enacted ban on same-sex marriage. The other is a challenge to a provision of federal law that prevents legally married gay couples from receiving a range of tax, health and pension benefits. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
Gay rights advocate Vin Testa waves a rainbow flag in front of the Supreme Court at sun up in Washington, Wednesday, June 26, 2013. Justices are expected to hand down major rulings on two gay marriage cases that could impact same-sex couples across the country. One is a challenge to California's voter-enacted ban on same-sex marriage. The other is a challenge to a provision of federal law that prevents legally married gay couples from receiving a range of tax, health and pension benefits. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
Casey Oakes, 26, of Monroe, N.J., left, Dan Choyce, 21, of Sicklerville, N.J., center left, Zach Wulderk, 19, of Hammonton, N.J., and his brother Dylan Wulderk, 22, right, wait for a ruling on same sex marriage at the Supreme Court in Washington, Wednesday, June 26, 2013. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen)
Casey Oakes, 26, of Monroe, N.J., left, Dan Choyce, 21, of Sicklerville, N.J., center left, Zach Wulderk, 19, of Hammonton, N.J., and his brother Dylan Wulderk, 22, right, wait for a ruling on same sex marriage at the Supreme Court in Washington, Wednesday, June 26, 2013. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen)
Casey Oakes, 26, of Monroe, N.J., left, Dan Choyce, 21, of Sicklerville, N.J., center left, Zach Wulderk, 19, of Hammonton, N.J., and his brother Dylan Wulderk, 22, right, wait for a ruling on same sex marriage at the Supreme Court in Washington, Wednesday, June 26, 2013. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen)
Gay rights activist Bryce Romero, who works for the Human Rights Campaign, offers an enthusiastic high-five to visitors getting in line to enter the Supreme Court on a day when justices are expected to hand down major rulings on two gay marriage cases that could impact same-sex couples across the country, in Washington, Wednesday, June 26, 2013. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
Gay rights activist Bryce Romero, who works for the Human Rights Campaign, offers an enthusiastic high-five to visitors getting in line to enter the Supreme Court on a day when justices are expected to hand down major rulings on two gay marriage cases that could impact same-sex couples across the country, in Washington, Wednesday, June 26, 2013. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
Gay rights activist Bryce Romero, who works for the Human Rights Campaign, offers an enthusiastic high-five to visitors getting in line to enter the Supreme Court on a day when justices are expected to hand down major rulings on two gay marriage cases that could impact same-sex couples across the country, in Washington, Wednesday, June 26, 2013. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

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