LGBTQ Corner: MN marriage equality bill, Obama against DOMA, big companies support marriage equality


Scott Dibble, the Minnesota senator who introduced the new bill to legalize gay marriage in his state.

Denny Patterson

Minnesota gay marriage bill introduced

The battle over same-sex marriage heated up recently as Senator Scott Dibble introduced a bill to legalize gay marriage. He believes the legislation has the momentum to pass since voters disapproved of a constitutional amendment that would have strengthened the existing gay marriage ban.
In an interview with CBS Minnesota, Dibble said, “It’s just simply an amendment that removes the restriction that disallows some couples from getting married. My strong sense, even from folks in greater Minnesota, is that they’re comfortable with this; they know that Minnesota has changed a lot and is continuing to change at a very rapid pace.
State Representative Karen Clark is also expected to introduce a similar bill in the House, but neither she nor Dibble expect a vote on their bills until after the Minnesota Legislature passes budget bills. The state’s governor, Mark Dayon, has stated that he will sign the bill legalizing gay marriage if it reaches his desk.
Obama administration urges Supreme Court to kill DOMA

Solicitor General Donald Verrilli, a lawyer with the Obama administration, is calling for the Supreme Court to strike down Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). He stated that section 3, which keeps the federal government from recognizing same-sex couples to legally marry in the U.S., is unconstitutional.
“Section 3 of DOMA violates the fundamental constitutional guarantee of equal protection,” Verrilli said. “The law denies to tens of thousands of same-sex couples who are legally married under state law an array of important federal benefits that are available to legally married opposite-sex couples. Because this discrimination cannot be justified as substantially furthering any important governmental interest, Section 3 is unconstitutional.”
More big companies supporting marriage equality

Several large corporations such as Facebook, Apple and eBay have signed onto an amicus brief in the Hollingsworth v. Perry case. The case, which could strike down laws banning same-sex marriages, is currently in front of the Supreme Court.
According to Fortune, companies argue that laws discriminating against homosexual couples “send an unmistakable signal that same-sex couples are in some way inferior to opposite-sex couples, a proposition that is anathema to amici’s commitment to equality and fair treatment to all.”
It has been reported that at least 60 companies have committed to signing the brief, and more are expected to join. The brief , which challenges Proposition 8, also argues that the rights of same-sex couples to marry is more than a constitutional issue, but it’s also a business imperative.