Defense of Marriage Act


What It Does: Defines “marriage” as a relationship between one man and one woman, and a “spouse” as a husband or wife of the opposite sex. Allows states to refuse to recognize same-sex marriages performed in another state, seen by some as a preemptive strike against the expected legalization of gay marriage in Hawaii.

Pro and Con: Proponents of DOMA argue that most Americans do not support same-sex marriages, which threaten traditional values and the already crumbling family structure. Opponents counter that marriage is a civil right–with numerous accompanying legal rights–that should be available to both gays and straights.

Status: On July 12, 1996, the House passed the Defense of Marriage Act (H.R. 3396) with a 342 to 67 vote. The Senate will consider the bill (S. 1740) on September 5, 1996. President Clinton has promised to sign it.

What You Can Do: Let Clinton know whether you think he should veto or sign the bill. E-mail him yourself or use our handy form:


Your e-mail address:

Your name:

Your mailing address:
[The White House discards e-mail messages with no street address]

 

President Bill Clinton
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue
Washington, DC

 

[“Veto DOMA” or “Support DOMA”]
Re:

 Dear Mr. President: 

Enter your message to Clinton:

 

DOES IT FEEL LIKE POLITICS IS AT A BREAKING POINT?

Headshot of Editor in Chief of Mother Jones, Clara Jeffery

It sure feels that way to me, and here at Mother Jones, we’ve been thinking a lot about what journalism needs to do differently, and how we can have the biggest impact.

We kept coming back to one word: corruption. Democracy and the rule of law being undermined by those with wealth and power for their own gain. So we're launching an ambitious Mother Jones Corruption Project to do deep, time-intensive reporting on systemic corruption, and asking the MoJo community to help crowdfund it.

We aim to hire, build a team, and give them the time and space needed to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We want to dig into the forces and decisions that have allowed massive conflicts of interest, influence peddling, and win-at-all-costs politics to flourish.

It's unlike anything we've done, and we have seed funding to get started, but we're looking to raise $500,000 from readers by July when we'll be making key budgeting decisions—and the more resources we have by then, the deeper we can dig. If our plan sounds good to you, please help kickstart it with a tax-deductible donation today.

Thanks for reading—whether or not you can pitch in today, or ever, I'm glad you're with us.

Signed by Clara Jeffery

Clara Jeffery, Editor-in-Chief

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our newsletters

Subscribe and we'll send Mother Jones straight to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate

Share your feedback: We’re planning to launch a new version of the comments section. Help us test it.