June 6, 2012 was another significant day for the fight against DOMA. Another federal judge has found DOMA to be unconstitutional. The plaintiff, Edie Windsor, was forced by Section 3 of DOMA to pay estate taxes in excess of $360,000 after the 2009 death of her wife, Thea Spyer. Windser and Spyer had been together 46 years at the time of Spyer’s death.
Less than a week after a unanimous finding by a 3-judge panel in Gill v. Office of Personnel Management, where the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit that DOMA is unconstitutional, Judge Jones for the Southern District of New York has also ruled that DOMA’s definition of marriage is unconstitutional.
The recent significant win against the Defense of Marriage Act follows a series of federal trial-court rulings that found Section 3 of DOMA to be unconstitutional earlier this year – a ruling by U.S. district Court Judge Jeffrey S. White and Judge Claudia Wilken in California.
Congratulations to Edie Windsor and our colleagues at the ACLU for this important victory! The fight against DOMA may still be ongoing, but progress is being made each and every day!