Radio Times


June 27, 2013

Guests: Kermit Roosevelt and Douglas NeJaime

Yesterday the Supreme Court delivered two historic rulings backing gay marriage. ¬†In the first,¬†United States v Windsor, the court found the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) discriminates against same-sex couples. ¬†The decision means that gay couples will now be entitled to the same federal benefits as straight couples, provided they’re legally married. ¬† In a second endorsement of gay unions, the Supreme Court chose not to rule on the case of Hollingsworth v Perry,¬†effectively striking down California’s Propostion 8 – a 2008 law which banned same-sex marriages.

The landmark ruling on DOMA – which was passed into law under President Clinton’s administration – represents an important step forward for gay rights in America. ¬†Same-sex couples will now be able to file joint tax returns, inherit each other’s property without paying tax, and become entitled to other health and pension benefits. ¬†But with gay marriage currently legal in just 12 states and the District of Columbia,¬†questions remain about how equalizing this decision will be. ¬†We’ll ask University of Pennsylvania Constitutional Law Professor KERMIT ROOSEVELT, who filed an amicus briefing in US v Windsor, and DOUGLAS NEJAIME, Associate Professor at Loyola Law School in California.

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