Chester J. Straub
|Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit|
June 3, 1998 – July 16, 2008
|Appointed by||Bill Clinton|
|Preceded by||Joseph McLaughlin|
|Succeeded by||Gerard Lynch|
May 12, 1937 |
New York City, New York, U.S.
|Alma mater||Saint Peter's University
University of Virginia
Chester John Straub (born May 12, 1937) is a Senior Circuit Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit headquartered in New York City.
Straub, a native of Brooklyn, received his B.A. degree from St. Peter’s College in 1958, and his LL.B. degree from the University of Virginia Law School in 1961. He practiced law in New York from 1963 to 1998, and also served as a member of the New York State Assembly from 1967 to 1972 and the New York State Senate from 1973 to 1975.
Straub served as a First Lieutenant in U.S. Army Intelligence and Security from 1961 to 1963. In 1963, he began the private practice of law with Willkie Farr & Gallagher, where he became a partner in 1971, and where he remained until his appointment as a Judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit in 1998. Judge Straub’s private practice was concentrated in litigation, regulatory agencies and governmental affairs. During this period he also served as a New York State Assemblyman from 1967 until 1972 and as a New York State Senator from 1973 until 1975. He also served as a mediator/neutral evaluator in the District Courts for the Southern and Eastern Districts of New York, and as a special master for the New York State Supreme Court in the 1st Judicial Department.
In January 2006, Straub was one of the three judges selected to hear National Abortion Federation v. Gonzales, 437 F.3d 278, one of the cases later folded into and resolved by Gonzales v. Carhart. The Second Circuit thereby became one of three circuits to uphold district court rulings against the constitutionality of the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act of 2003. Out of the nine circuit court judges who ruled on this issue, Straub was the only one to dissent, voting to reverse the district court and uphold the Act.
Straub took senior status on July 16, 2008.
On October 18, 2012, Straub dissented in Windsor v. United States, a case in which the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit held in an opinion written by prominent conservative Chief Judge Dennis Jacobs, that Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) is unconstitutional. Of the six circuit and five district judges to rule on challenges to DOMA Section 3 brought by married same-sex couples, Straub was the only judge to find the law constitutional. He wrote that DOMA could easily be justified by Congress' "common sense." Straub also stated that DOMA was constitutional because "the state is . . . interested in preventing 'irresponsible procreation,' a phenomenon implicated exclusively by heterosexuals," and that "reserving federal marriage rights to opposite-sex couples 'protect[s] civil society.'" Straub went on to say that courts have no role in protecting minorities' civil rights "where there is a robust political debate because doing so poisons the political well, imposing a destructive anti-majoritarian constitutional ruling on a vigorous debate."  On June 26, 2013, the United States Supreme Court affirmed that DOMA Section 3 failed to meet the most basic constitutional equality guarantee because there was "strong evidence" that the "essence" of the law was "'a bare congressional desire to harm a politically unpopular group.'" 
- Circuit Judges' Biographical Information. United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
- Judge Straub. "Windsor v. USA - Dissent from Majority Ruling". 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals. Retrieved October 19, 2012.
- "Windsor v. USA". United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. Retrieved October 18, 2012.
- "Windsor v. United States". New York Times. Retrieved October 18, 2012.
- "Windsor v. United States". United States Supreme Court. Retrieved June 26, 2013.
|New York Assembly|
|Member of the New York Assembly
from the 35th district
|New York State Senate|
|Member of the New York Senate
from the 17th district
|Member of the New York Senate
from the 18th district
|Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit