Richard Socarides On DOMA Ruling

“It now looks like it will be this case, rather than the more famous Perry case being litigated by Ted Olson and David Boies, that will reach the Supreme Court first. It’s a bit of inside baseball, but this is the result favored by the old guard of gay-rights litigators who prefer a more incremental strategy of Supreme Court review. (Although they will not like the language in today’s decision that suggests that states can decide on a case-by-case basis who can get married; but this is the risk of incrementalism.)

“In this case, a Supreme Court ruling in favor of the plaintiffs would not require any kind of finding that there exists a hitherto-unrecognized constitutional right to same-sex marriage—only that the federal government must recognize marriages validly preformed in states that choose to do so. But whatever happens next, there is no question that this decision is another big step in the march toward full equality for gay and lesbian Americans.” – Former Clinton White House aide Richard Socarides, writing for the New Yorker.