Huge Advances in Gay Rights in the US

marriage-equality

Lots of news from the last two weeks in the US!

Firstly, President Obama and the Attorney General have said they will not defend the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) - the law which states that marriage is only recognised if it's between a man and a woman. This opens up the doors for a lot of lawsuits which will battle DOMA and hopefully overturn it in the Supreme Court, allowing gay marriage across the whole of the US. This includes immigration rights for binational same-sex couples, hospital visitation rights, tax benefits, etc. 

Read more here: http://whitehouse.blogs.cnn.com/2011/02/23/attorney-general-declares-doma-unconstitutional/

In the wake of this announcement, Senator Feinstein of California has announced she will introduce a bill to repeal the DOMA. "My own belief is that when two people love each other and enter the contract of marriage, the federal government should honor that," she said. "I opposed the Defense of Marriage Act in 1996. It was the wrong law then; it is the wrong law now, and it should be repealed."

Read more here: http://www.mercurynews.com/breaking-news/ci_17463241?nclick_check=1

Also, the Immigration Equality Action Fund has announced it will file a lawsuit against DOMA on behalf of binational same-sex couples: 

Read more here: http://immigrationequalityactionfund.org/blog/in_the_courts_a_historic_announcement/

And if that wasn't enough, the state of Hawai'i has just legalized civil unions and Maryland is close on it's heels legalizing gay marriage.

http://blogs.wsj.com/law/2011/02/24/hawaii-legalizes-same-sex-civil-unions/

http://colesville.patch.com/articles/house-committee-passes-same-sex-marriage-2