Congressman Alan Lowenthal has joined with 172 Members of the United States House of Representatives and 40 U.S. Senators in filing an amicus "friend of the court" brief with the U.S Supreme Court in opposition to the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA).
The Supreme Court is preparing to hear U.S. v. Windsor, a case challenging Section 3 of DOMA, which defines marriage for purposes of federal law as "only a legal union between one man and one woman." This definition currently excludes married gay and lesbian couples from all marriage-based federal responsibilities and rights.
"Marriage equality is a matter of dignity and basic human rights. Same-sex couples are no different in their passion, dedication, and commitment to their spouses than other couples. Equal love deserves equal respect, and equal respect demands equal rights," Congressman Lowenthal said.
The amicus brief reads in part, "we all agree that Section 3 of DOMA...lacks a rational connection to any legitimate federal purpose, and is therefore unconstitutional."
The unconstitutionality of Section 3 of DOMA was upheld by the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York and further affirmed by the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit before reaching the U.S. Supreme Court. On Friday, President Barack Obama also filed an amicus brief with the U.S. Supreme Court asking the Justices to find DOMA unconstitutional.