The Defense of Marriage Act Goes on Trial Today


The U.S. Supreme Court will hear oral argument this morning in the case of United States v. Windsor. At issue is whether Section 3 of the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act, which forbids the federal government from recognizing same-sex marriages that are lawful under state law, violates the equal protection component of the Constitution's Fifth Amendment. Like yesterday's divisive oral argument over California's Proposition 8, today's case promises to raise fundamental questions not only about the future of gay rights, but also about the proper scope of government power.

In preparation for today's showdown at the Supreme Court, here is a selection of Reason's extensive coverage of the legal and political battles over the Defense of Marriage Act.

The Federalist Case Against the Defense of Marriage Act. The debate over gay marriage and federal power reaches the Supreme Court. By Damon Root.

Wedding Bell News. Same-sex marriage and social evolution. By Nick Gillespie.

Fair-Weather Federalists. Why conservatives and progressives should unite against an overweening national government. By Jacob Sullum.

The Libertarian Gay Marriage Paradox. How opening up marriage regulations will help make the case for eliminating them. By Scott Shackford.

Room for Disagreement on Gay Marriage. Understanding the White House's decision to stop defending the Defense of Marriage Act. By Steve Chapman.

Bob Barr Recants DOMA Very Publicly, A Couple of Months After Two Relevant Votes. By Brian Doherty.

Click below to watch Reason TV's "Citizenship Denied: DOMA, Immigration, and Gay Marriage."