The indispensable Art Leonard has some thoughts on the potential significance of the internal grievance opinions that Eugene discussed earlier today.
All of this matters — beyond employees of the Ninth Circuit who entered same-sex marriages between June and November 2008 — mostly because the Ninth Circuit seems the most likely federal appeals court to decide a direct challenge to DOMA in the next few years. Judge Reinhardt's opinion isn't a shocker, but Judge Kozinski's is intriguing without committing him to anything. If the Ninth Circuit ruled against DOMA it would be difficult to see how it could do so without finding a right to same-sex marriage. And that would put the Supreme Court, which I think would like to avoid the issue for the foreseeable future, in a very difficult position. But that's still a few "ifs" down the road.