Reuters - Video

Edition: U.S. | U.K. | IN | CN

Rough Cuts

Supreme Court shows little love for "defense of marriage" law

Wednesday, March 27, 2013 - 04:20

A majority of Supreme Court justices signal sympathy for overturning a controversial 1996 law - the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA)- that denies federal tax breaks and other benefits to legally married same-sex couples.

▲ Hide Transcript

View Transcript

Mister chief justice and may it please report. The issue of same sex marriage certainly implicates profoundly and deeply held views on both -- issue. But the legal question on the merits before this court is actually quite there. On the assumption that states that the constitutional option. Either to define marriage and traditional terms -- to recognize same sex marriages or to adopt a compromise like civil unions. Does the federal government. -- have seen flexibility. Congress just passes a law which takes about let's say 30% of the people were married in the United States and says no tax deduction. -- -- -- -- -- -- -- Do that. Again I think the right way and analyze that he is is there any distinction -- -- at what level scrutiny simply stated the level of scrutiny is rational basis. And my answer would be yes they can do that -- -- kept up with the rational basis -- there isn't any I'm trying to think of examples I just can't imagine what it is. Well but I think uniform pre and individual rights in the same uniform -- good enough no matter how. Thought it's no matter how irrational but nothing big uniformity we could take. Matter you see when I'm room -- -- it's expected we're going to write -- into it cannot sleep every one of those cases but at the -- on its own. And so you would be really. Diminishing what if they. And fall he's -- next thing you know. Eight it contracted. The full marriage and -- informant. With respect it's -- that's not federal government saying the federal government is saying that with in its own round. In federal policies where we assume that the federal government has the authority to define the terms that appear in their own statue but in those areas they are gonna have their own definition for -- This is all these federal statutes when we say marriage we need instead of saying we mean. Heterosexual part we need whenever we use it heterosexuals and homosexuals. If that's what it's. People can do that is honest people rebelled and buried under state law in -- -- state I don't I don't know -- I'll -- -- it I. Not sure -- the federal government censorship questions Justice Scalia and -- the federal government could create a new room. Federal marriage that would be some kind of pared its fix them from the back and I kind of sticks out people did not have an understanding that they have today. When you so confident and that -- it kept coming and many states permit them. It gay couples today and -- -- and and so there's been this CJ. Between now and -- the next. I think with respect and understanding of it on their relationship their -- to cancer. So we have a whole series of cases which suggests. Which suggests that. When congress targets improved but it's not everybody's favorite group in the world. That we look at those cases with solemn even if I'm not just that with some regret this day. Do we really think that congress was doing this uniform many reasons. -- to rethink that Congress's judgment was in fact it I'd just like I fear. Don't -- was not an active for any purpose. Uniformity. Caution causing any of that. It was enacted to exclude same sex married lawfully married couples from federal benefit regimes. Based upon. The conclusion. That -- That was. Driven by moral disapproval PH from that was that you were 84 senators who voted in favor of it -- the president's -- they were motivated by -- whatever. Explanation. Section three is discrimination. And I think it's time for the court to recognize. That this discrimination. Excluding lawfully married gay and lesbian couples -- federal benefits cannot reconcile with our fundamental commitment. To equal treatment under the law.

Press CTRL+C (Windows), CMD+C (Mac), or long-press the URL below on your mobile device to copy the code

Supreme Court shows little love for "defense of marriage" law

Wednesday, March 27, 2013 - 04:20