Bothwell praises Supreme Court decision to strike down DOMA

Full announcement from Cecil Bothwell:

Asheville, NC— City Councilmember Cecil Bothwell praised the Supreme Court’s landmark decision on Wednesday to strike down the Defense of Marriage Act, a 1996 federal law banning recognition of same-sex marriage at the federal level. The Court ruled the law to be unconstitutional by a 5-4 vote, meaning that same-sex couples whose marriages are recognized at the state level will now be eligible for federal protections and benefits as well.

Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote in the majority opinion that the federal law, by “treating those persons as living in marriages less respected than others…is in violation of the Fifth Amendment.” The Court also dismissed an appeal by opponents of same-sex marriage in California’s Prop 8 ruling, thus allowing same-sex marriage to continue in that state.

Bothwell praised the ruling on Wednesday as “a huge step for equality and the Bill of Rights.” Bothwell has been a vocal supporter of equality during his time on City Council. Since day one, he has advocated passage of a Civil Liberties resolution fashioned by an interfaith forum, the ACLU, the Asheville Buncombe Human Rights Committee, and has been supported by the Director of the Campaign for Southern Equality. Bothwell has also been a vocal opponent of the Boy Scouts of America’s discriminatory membership practices, and he recently attended Scouts for Equality events in the area to urge the BSA to alter their practices, which it decided to do last month.

Ultimately, Bothwell believes the government should get out of the marriage business entirely, and let people form marriages under the dictates of their faith communities, with social and medical entitlements accorded individually. “The government has no business deciding which marriages are legitimate and which marriages are not,” Bothwell said. “The decision Wednesday is a huge step for equality and fairness, both in the LGBT community and for others as well.”

Incumbent Cecil Bothwell is running for re-election for another four-year term on the Asheville City Council. Bothwell is an investigative reporter, builder, organic gardener and public servant.

For more information about Cecil Bothwell’s campaign, visit You can also contact Holly Cian, Communications Director, at or 828-989-7257.


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