An example how marriage really isn’t marriage.

October 18, 2006 at 10:07 am (Social and Politics, Uncategorized)

By that, I mean MA’s gay marriage, as opposed to federally recognized marriage…


Gay congressman’s spouse denied benefits

BOSTON – When same-sex marriage became legal in Massachusetts, among those who tied the knot were former Rep. Gerry Studds and Dean Hara.

But getting married didn’t protect them under federal law: Hara has learned he is not eligible for any portion of Studds’ estimated annual $114,337 pension following his partner’s death last week.

The 1996 federal Defense of Marriage Act blocks the federal government from recognizing the 2004 marriage between Studds and Hara or other same-sex couples.

Studds voted against the act, which was passed July 12, 1996, by a vote of 342-67, according to the House Clerk’s office.

Pete Sepp, spokesman for National Taxpayers Union, a nonprofit citizen watchdog group, estimated Studds’ annual pension at $114,337, adjusted for inflation.

That would have made Hara eligible for a lifetime annual pension of about $62,000, which would grow with inflation, if the marriage was recognized by the federal government, Sepp said.

Things like this, and immigration laws, are why I really feel that more needs to be done at the federal level as far as gay rights go. But enough political jibber-jabber from me.

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