Mr. DeFAZIO. Almost 17 years to the day--that's a long time--the House of Representatives passed the so-called Defense of Marriage Act. At that time, I went to the floor and voted with a small minority against this legislation. I said it was unnecessary, discriminatory, and unconstitutional.
It took 17 years to work through the system and to finally get the Supreme Court to act and to decide that, indeed, the Defense of Marriage Act, so-called, is unconstitutional and is a deprivation of the equal liberty of persons it has protected in the Fifth Amendment:
``The Federal statute is invalid, for no legitimate purpose overcomes the purpose and effect to disparage and injure those whom the State, by its marriage laws, sought to protect in personhood and dignity,'' as written by Justice Kennedy, ``by seeking to displace this protection and treating those persons as living in marriages less respected than others.''
Today, the Supreme Court restored justice and equity in America.