Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed released a statement Wednesday in response to the Supreme Court’s ruling on the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). Reed, who earlier signed a largely cerremonial resolution backing same-sex marriage in Atlanta, lauded the High Court’s decision.
“The Supreme Court ruling to strike down the Defense of Marriage Act was a courageous decision and is an enormous victory for loving, married couples and their families. It is my hope that today’s decision puts our nation on an inevitable path toward the day when all citizens, regardless of their sexual orientation, can enjoy equal protection under the law and marry the ones they love. “
The Court voted 5-4 today to strike down Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act, ruling that same-sex spouses legally married in a state may receive federal benefits. The Court also voted 5-4 today to restrict and do away with parts of California’s law restricting marriage between couples of the same sex.
Georgia Attorney General Sam Orlens said also weighed in on the ruling, saying that while he disagreed with the ruling it would not affect the peach state, because of language in the ruling.
“Today, the Supreme Court of the United States held 5-4 that Congress violated equal protection when it defined marriage for federal purposes differently from the way the State of New York defined it,” Orlens said in a statement. “I disagree with the Court’s decision. But it is important to understand what the decision does and does not mean.
“Today’s decision rests on the basic assumption – with which I strongly agree – that the power to define marriage is a power traditionally reserved to the States. The decision does not affect existing state definitions of marriage; in fact, it explicitly says that it is limited to marriages recognized by states as lawful. I agree with the Chief Justice that this limitation means what it says. The definition of marriage adopted by Georgia’s voters is unaffected by today’s decision.”