Congressman Jerrold Nadler, who supports gay rights and marriage equality, attended the Supreme Court hearings on the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and was optimistic with what he heard, according to a report by Capital New York.
Nadler, a long-time opponent of DOMA, had co-sponsored a bill that sought to repeal it on grounds of it being unconstitutional. Nadler also happens to be the congressional representative for Edith Windsor, the plaintiff in the landmark case who is fighting the federal government for not recognizing her marriage to her late wife Thea Spyer.
According to Nadler, five justices expressed skepticism regarding federal government’s ability to deny benefits to married couples like Windsor and Spyer.
“At least five, and I wouldn’t be surprised if there was a sixth on federalism,” he said, referring to Chief Justice John Roberts.
Nadler said he didn’t expect the justices to dodge this case, despite the hour-long argument on the court’s jurisdiction, and said he was encouraged by the justices’ questions, particularly from Anthony Kennedy, the likely swing vote.
“The key argument was the Equal Protection argument,” Nadler said. “And there was no answer. They couldn’t answer it.”
Ever optimistic, Nadler predicts that the court would also strike down DOMA as being unconstitutional.
Only time will tell if Nadler is correct in Supreme Court prognosticating.