gay marriage

Two Fort Lauderdale men are the first wedded same-sex couple recognized by the United States for a green card, winning their immigration battle two days after the Supreme Court ordered the federal government to honor gay marriages.

“We’re in the history books,” said Julian Marsh, a well-known gay music producer and DJ, who sponsored his Bulgarian-born husband, Traian “Tray” Popov, for a green card. “Oh my God, that’s totally amazing.”

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LINDA WERTHEIMER, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Linda Wertheimer.

This was a week of big Supreme Court decisions which will have long-lasting implications and are also certain to present plenty of opportunities for partisan politics.

Peetje2 / Creative Commons/Flickr

On The Florida Roundup, we take a look at three big decisions out of Washington, D.C. this week: the U.S. Supreme Court decisions on gay marriage and the Voting Rights Act as well as the U.S. Senate's vote on the immigration bill.

U.S. Census Bureau

What do the rulings from the highest court in the United States mean for Florida's same-sex couples?  

We'll unpack the Supreme Court decisions and explain what impact they could have in the everyday lives of lesbian and gay couples, from tax filing to naturalization and wills.

Wil Jackson

Floridians in same-sex marriages  and elsewhere hope to be indebted to Edith Windsor. She is the 84-year-old widow whose U.S. Supreme Court victory garnered equal federal rights for gay marriages this week.

Windsor nursed her ailing wife, Thea Spyer, until Spyer died of multiple sclerosis. Until recently gays and lesbians  Florida often have not had the opportunity to provide loved ones that kind of care if family or hospital staff objected.

The dual victories the Supreme Court handed to gay-marriage supporters Wednesday seemed to temporarily shift the focus of the fight from Washington to the states.

For instance, one of the more notable reactions to the Supreme Court decisions overturning the Defense of Marriage Act and upholding a lower court ruling that blocked California's Proposition 8 from taking effect came from the American Civil Liberties Union.

Danny Hammontree/Flickr

The benefits will be substantial for those who get them, but the beneficiaries of the U. S. Supreme Court's decision to strike down the Federal Defense of Marriage Act are just a small subset of  Florida's LGBT population.

They are the couples with marriage licenses from states where same-sex marriage is legal. Until now, DOMA prevented them from receiving tax breaks, Social Security, pension considerations and myriad other benefits that the federal government extends to married couples.

Amy Sherman

The Defense of Marriage Act has been declared unconstitutional by the Supreme Court of the United States on the basis of equal protection.

The 5-4 ruling came down at 10:00 a.m. Wednesday, sending waves of excitement across the nation.

Initial reactions online were lively comments from liberals who saw this legal development as the end of an era: 

NPR

The U.S. Supreme Court is finishing its year with rulings on three major cases: affirmative action in college admissions, the pre-clearance requirements of the 1965 Voting Rights Act and the status of gay marriage (Prop 8 and DOMA.)

Join host Linda Wertheimer tonight with guests Ron Elving, Senior Washington Editor; Nina Totenberg, Legal Affairs Correspondent; Tom Goldstein, publisher of SCOTUSblog and Michael Fauntroy, Associate Professor of Political Science at Howard University for an hour-long special that will look at these rulings and reflect on the past year.

Photo provided

Update, June 26: This post was originally published back in April of this year but we decided to rerun it in light of today's decision by the U.S. Supreme Court.

Last summer, my father-in-law entered the hospital in Germany. My wife, Lu Mueller-Kaul, desperately wanted to be with him. But she was in this country on a complicated visa that forbids her from returning if she leaves. She stayed as her father suffered, cursing the unfair system.

The Supreme Court's 5-4 decision Wednesday to overturn the Defense of Marriage Act is a monumental victory for advocates of same-sex marriage.

But what happens now that the 1996 federal law that confines marriage to a man and a woman has been declared unconstitutional?

Will federal benefits flow only to same-sex married couples living in states that recognize their unions?

A Timeline Of Same-Sex Marriage In Florida

Jun 26, 2013

The history of gay marriage in Florida may reveal what the future holds. As counties in South Florida gave more rights to same-sex couples, the Sunshine State reinforced its opposition.

Florida is among 30 states with the most rigid same-sex marriage ban, including it in its state constitution.

The following is a brief look back at the issue in recent decades:

1977

Miami Agency Enjoys Sweet Spot Of Gay Advertising

May 7, 2013
tinsley.com

Dorn Martell doesn't act surprised to hear gay culture is hot right now after a perfect storm of recent events from legal rulings on same-sex marriage to headlines of professional athletes coming out.

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