Supreme Court Calls "Defense of Marriage" Unconstitutional - WLNS TV 6 Lansing - Jackson | Your Local News Leader

Supreme Court Calls "Defense of Marriage" Unconstitutional

The Supreme Court says legally married same-sex couples should get the same federal benefits as heterosexual couples.

The court invalidated a provision of the federal Defense of Marriage Act Wednesday that has prevented married gay couples from receiving a range of tax, health and retirement benefits that are generally available to married people.

"DOMA singles out a class of persons deemed by a State entitled ot recognition and protection to enhance their own liberty" wrote Justice Anthony Kennedy in his decision.

The decision only applies to "legally married" people. Gay marriage is allowed in a handful of states. Michigan does not allow it.

Kennedy's decision was joined by Breyer, Kagan, Sotomayor, and Ginsberg.

Chief Justice Roberts, Scalia, Alito, and Thomas all dissented.

President Obama released his statement about the ruling saying that it "is a victory for couples who have long fought for equal treatment under the law; for children whose parents' marriages will now be recognized, rightly, as legitimate; for families that, at long last, will get the respect and protection they deserve".

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