Via press release: The AG’s Office has filed a brief with the U.S. Supreme Court in response to a defense request for review of the First Circuit Court of Appeals ruling that struck down the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) as unconstitutional. In its brief, the AG asks the Supreme Court to uphold rulings by lower courts that found DOMA unconstitutional. In 2009, under Attorney General Martha Coakley’s direction, Massachusetts became the first state in the nation to file a complaint alleging that DOMA, which affects more than 1,100 federal statutory provisions, violates the United States Constitution by interfering with the Commonwealth’s sovereign authority to define and regulate the marital status of its residents. The complaint also alleged that DOMA exceeds Congress’s authority under the Spending Clause because Congress does not have a valid reason for requiring Massachusetts to treat married same-sex couples differently from all other married couples, and that it unlawfully requires Massachusetts to disregard valid marriages in its implementation of federally funded programs. Earlier this month both the Department of Justice and a legal team funded by the House GOP requested Supreme Court review of the above case. Read Coakley's brief.
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