Massachusetts Attorney General Asks Supreme Court to Uphold Appeals Court Decision Striking Down DOMA

Another request for the Supreme Court to consider a case challenging DOMA was filed today, by Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley, Reuters reports:

Coakley"The Defense of Marriage Act is a discriminatory and unconstitutional law that harms thousands of families in Massachusetts and takes away our state's right to extend marriage equality to all couples," Coakley said in a statement. "It is our firm conviction that in order to truly achieve marriage equality, all couples must enjoy the same rights and protections under both state and federal law."

Coakley's 37-page brief asked the nation's highest court to uphold the decision that found denying federal benefits to married same-sex couples was unconstitutional.

The brief said that the state "normally would oppose further review in order to ensure that the judgment takes effect as soon as possible" but added that "the Commonwealth recognizes that DOMA's unconstitutionality is a question of national significance."

"It is important that the Court address the matter in a case that presents the full complement of DOMA's constitutional infirmities," the brief said.

Judge Joseph Tauro (a Nixon appointee!) ruled DOMA to be in violation of the 10th Amendment, the amendment guaranteeing states' rights, in July 2010.

Coakley's filing today was in response to a June 29 filing by Rep. John Boehner and his fellow Republicans on the GOP-controlled House Bipartisan Legal Advisory Group, which petitioned the Supreme Court to rule on a First Circuit Court decision upholding the ruling striking DOMA down.


  1. Jake says

    In my time in Massachusetts, I’ve found Martha Coakley to be a very milk toast, careful, and almost timid politician. The fact that she’s sticking her neck out for this indicates a political or personal motive. Having listened to her, it is most likely political, looking at her it seems personal, with that bland drag many women hide behind. I’m wondering why everyone is in such hurry for more gun violence after marriage passes. Thank you Martha. You have no power west of Worcester. Don’t use us.


  2. says

    I still say someone needs to threaten to bring a law that abolishes marriage for everyone to see what people’s reactions are and to see if their beliefs hold when someone is trying to shatter their “traditions.”

  3. ratbastard says

    Hmmm. Nice gesture. She’s not the most popular public official in MA, and I hate to burst people’s bubbles but she’s grand standing this issue because it helps deflect attention away from other very serious issues she’s avoiding. It’s an east thing to do for a politician in MA because gay marriage and gay civil rights issues aren’t political suicide like in other states.


    Nixon would be considered strictly middle of the road, even left of center, by today’s standards. I would argue many of his actions and policies would make Obama appear fascist by comparison.

  4. Jake says

    But Nixon would never support gay marriage in the ’70’s. It was hardly on the radar. I’d say it’s the other way around. Now the radar is jammed. Obama is no saint, it all comes out when they leave office. Gays manipulated their victories.

    I moved 3000 miles away from Massachusetts. I will not have these bad memories try to shape my life. Barney’s been put out to pasture. I did not vote for Coakley. Go away.

  5. Icebloo says

    HOW LONG is this going to take ? The whole US judicial system is broken ! We need to scrap it and start again with a fairer and more transparent process.

    The Supreme Court can actually refuse to hear these cases (or any other cases) so what kind of fu#ked up system is that ? If they only want to hear the cases that interest them or the people whose agenda they are trying to support then what is the point of the Supreme Court ? It’s totally corrupt.

    America is NOT a democracy. We are a joke.

  6. Sam says

    Yeah, she isn’t really well liked in MA and her obvious loss to Scott Brown (yeah, I voted for him too) shows just that. Still will vote for Lizzie in November.

    As an aside, Nixon once offered Ted Kennedy his rubber stamp if Kennedy could get universal healthcare passed by both houses. So why people think Nixon was a radical right-winger is beyond me. He was just unethical.

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  8. Bill S. says

    The Supreme Court could not possibly hear the thousands of appeals petitioned to it every year. This is why we have the Circuit Courts of Appeal. The Supreme Court only steps in for extraordinary circumstances, where nationwide precedence must be set on a matter of law. This is true for DOMA and it is certain that they will take this appeal.

  9. anon says

    A nice political stunt but only the losing the side can petition for an appeal, and she’s on the winning side. She’s basically trying to get the court to affirm her previous victory. Not going to happen.

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