NYC Backs Gay Widow’s Suit Against Marriage Law
NEW YORK - New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg and the speaker of the City Council plan to jointly file a legal brief in support of an 82-year-old woman’s challenge of a federal law denying benefits to partners in a gay marriage.
The mayor and Speaker Christine Quinn announced their intent Wednesday, calling the Defense of Marriage Act "unconstitutional."
Edith Windsor sued the government in November 2010. Her lawyers had argued that the law violates the equal protection guarantee of the U.S. Constitution.
Windsor’s partner died in 2009, two years after they married in Canada. Because of the federal law, Windsor didn’t qualify for the unlimited marital deduction on her late spouse’s estate.
A federal judge in Manhattan ruled in her favor earlier this month. The ruling is now being appealed.