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Posted at 3:17 PM ET, 02/23/2011

Obama declares DOMA unconstitutional, continues "evolving" on gay marriage

By Greg Sargent

As you've no doubt already heard, the Obama administration announced today that the President now views Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act as unconstitutional; the administration will stop defending it in court. That, of course, is the section holding that for federal purposes, marriage is defined as only between a man and a woman.

Does this mean the president now favors gay marriage? At today's press availiability, White House press secretary Jay Carney said he doesn't:

"I would refer you to just to his fairly recent statements on that. He is grappling with the issue. But he -- again, I want to make the distinction between his personal views, which he has discussed, and the legal decision that was made today."

Obama recently said his position on the issue is "evolving," so Carney's quote appears to mean that it still is in that mode.

That said, the President's determination that Section 3 is unconstitutional is unquestionably a welcome act of leadership on his part. It also hints at a larger dynamic that's worth noting. After the President did the right thing and threw his weight behind the repeal of don't ask don't tell, many argued that his success on that front would only make his position on DOMA less tenable -- basic consistency would demand that his administration stop defending it in court.

That's exactly what happened. Now, in similar fashion, his determination that the key plank of DOMA is unconstitutional may make his current position on the issue -- that he's "grappling" with it -- less tenable over time, too. Or, if it doesn't, it certainly should. After all, the President himself supported gay marriage way back in 1996. So if he again declared support for gay marriage he would merely be coming full circle.

Obviously today's statement from Carney suggests Obama doesn't believe it's politically safe enough (yet) to declare full support for gay marriage. But the overall dynamic is certainly encouraging. The arc of history is bending -- albeit slowly -- in the right direction.

By Greg Sargent  | February 23, 2011; 3:17 PM ET
Categories:  gay rights  
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Next: Gay rights no longer hot button issue for GOP?

Comments

I believe in intelligent design on DOMA.

Posted by: shrink2 | February 23, 2011 3:24 PM | Report abuse

It's noteworthy today to mention that a Republican state senator in North Carolina is introducing a constitutional amendment to ban same-sex marriage in that state ... the very state where Democrats will meet next summer.

National reporters need to sit up and take notice: Marriage will be a very, very big issue in the 2012 election (as it has already started being a big deal for Republicans who hope to win Iowa caucuses).

2012 will be the watershed year for marriage equality. Let's hope Obama continues to move to the morally correct position, which is also rapidly becoming the politically correct position.

Posted by: S1VA | February 23, 2011 3:25 PM | Report abuse

It is a sad day for America when The Government stops getting involved, to defend the Traditional Sad Marriage rights of Anti-Government Social Conservatives.

Posted by: Liam-still | February 23, 2011 3:28 PM | Report abuse

"The arc of history is bending -- albeit slowly -- in the right direction."

I guess that's why it's referrred to as the "arc" of history. I suspect the same will ultimately happen with single payer healthcare. Something that the Right Wingers can't admit, but human progress moves slowly and is inexorable, always moving forward, so I don't know why they just don't get out of the way.

Posted by: filmnoia | February 23, 2011 3:33 PM | Report abuse

OT...

Jeff Cox, the Deputy Attorney General in Indiana, who called for the use of live ammo against WI protesters has been fired.

http://www.wlfi.com/dpps/news/indiana/tweet-lands-deputy-ag-in-hot-water_3727263

Posted by: suekzoo1 | February 23, 2011 3:35 PM | Report abuse

Here is a fine piece,

"More immediately, it is important that the [British] Government steps up the pressure on the Libyan regime to abandon its brutal efforts, backed by mercenaries, to suppress the uprising. Reports yesterday that the air force has been ordered to bomb protesters in Benghazi is reminiscent of Saddam Hussein’s vicious war against his own people. Many among the crowds are anxious to know when the Americans might intervene – and this from people who had been force-fed anti-US propaganda for decades. So far, President Obama has kept his own counsel, presumably for fear of providing Gaddafi with a pretext for blaming the uprising on foreign interference. There have also been calls for the Americans to enforce a no-fly zone to prevent warplanes being used to quash the revolt – but why should these matters be left to the Americans, or to Nato forces? Are other Arab leaders so intent on saving their own necks, or so wary of fomenting insurrection elsewhere, that they will do nothing beyond denouncing Gaddafi? Egypt, for example, may have problems of its own, but it remains the most powerful military presence in the region. Its new leaders should not stand by and watch as their fellow Arabs are massacred."

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/comment/telegraph-view/8343968/Libyas-neighbours-have-a-duty-to-help-its-people.html

Posted by: shrink2 | February 23, 2011 3:35 PM | Report abuse

"Obama doesn't believe it's politically safe enough..."

Well, if he would just do the right thing darn the politics then that truly would be "a welcome act of leadership."

Posted by: sbj3 | February 23, 2011 3:36 PM | Report abuse

"That said, the President's determination that Section 3 is unconstitutional is unquestionably a welcome act of leadership on his part. "

"Obviously today's statement from Carney suggests Obama doesn't believe it's politically safe enough (yet) to declare full support for gay marriage."

I'm not sure if it qualifies as "leadership" to wait until it's "politically safe" to reveal your actual position on social issues (presumably after they have "evolved" enough to come back to your original position).

Hence the question "What Does Obama Really Believe"?

Posted by: jnc4p | February 23, 2011 3:39 PM | Report abuse

OT...

Jeff Cox, the Deputy Attorney General in Indiana, who called for the use of live ammo against WI protesters has been fired.

http://www.wlfi.com/dpps/news/indiana/tweet-lands-deputy-ag-in-hot-water_3727263

Posted by: suekzoo1 | February 23, 2011 3:35 PM

.........................

Jeff Cox soon to receive an NRA Profile In Carnage Award!

Posted by: Liam-still | February 23, 2011 3:39 PM | Report abuse

Boehner's response to the DOJ no longer defending DOMA is some pretty weak tea:

"Michael Steel, a spokesman for [House Speaker John] Boehner, said in an e-mail he questions why Obama "thinks now is the appropriate time to stir up a controversial issue that sharply divides the nation" when "most Americans want Washington to focus on creating jobs and cutting spending."

Where's the jobs, Boehner? You haven't considered jobs at all yet.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | February 23, 2011 3:43 PM | Report abuse

"do the right thing darn the politics"

You were smiling when you wrote that.

@filmnoia, "human progress moves slowly and is inexorable"

Such a Protestant you are, the Pilgrims Progress circa 1678...and the wing nuts are still in the way.

Posted by: shrink2 | February 23, 2011 3:43 PM | Report abuse

Apologies for being totally OT, but I'm not sure whether I should laugh or cry at this:

"If you were worried there wouldn't be a 2012 candidate touting the pro-Crusades platform, then today is your lucky day!"

http://tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo.com/2011/02/rick-santorum-the-crusades-get-a-bad-rap.php?ref=fpi

Posted by: schrodingerscat | February 23, 2011 3:46 PM | Report abuse

scat: ""If you were worried there wouldn't be a 2012 candidate touting the pro-Crusades platform, then today is your lucky day!"

Maybe Santorum is oblivious as to the number of Jews who were slaughtered by Christians during the Crusades? Betcha he thinks they only killed Mooslims....

Posted by: suekzoo1 | February 23, 2011 3:54 PM | Report abuse

The Crusades get a bad rap, as does The Spanish Inquisition, and Bubonic Plague. It was just God engaging in some judicious thinning of the herd.

Posted by: Liam-still | February 23, 2011 4:00 PM | Report abuse

Still looking for more details, but apparently Little Hosni Walker only took 4 questions at his presser and then he bailed.

LOL

Posted by: suekzoo1 | February 23, 2011 4:02 PM | Report abuse

Oh, one thing progressives should keep in mind is that Obama usually does something like this on social issues when he's getting ready to acquiesce to Republican demands (aka "move to the center") on tax & spending policy.

Posted by: jnc4p | February 23, 2011 4:05 PM | Report abuse

Does anybody else think this is a strange time in history to decide to evolve on this issue? I'm guessing the White House senses an upperhand on the budget & state union standoffs unfolding. It is as if they are daring the Republicans to shut down the government and ignite more widespread protests at state capitals.

Posted by: willows1 | February 23, 2011 4:06 PM | Report abuse

willows, I like the cut of your jib

Posted by: shrink2 | February 23, 2011 4:08 PM | Report abuse

jnc4p - What are your "usual" cases? I'm just curious. There was the DADT repeal, but that seemed to be more a function of Congressional backbone than sudden White House involvement.

Posted by: willows1 | February 23, 2011 4:08 PM | Report abuse

"Such a Protestant you are, the Pilgrims Progress circa 1678...and the wing nuts are still in the way."

When the only thing left between you and utopia are wingnuts, you're not very far away at all. ;-). And for the sake of decorum, we prefer the contracted form.

Outstanding comments today everybody! Please keep them coming, and many thanks!

Posted by: TrollMcWingnut | February 23, 2011 4:09 PM | Report abuse

"Still looking for more details, but apparently Little Hosni Walker only took 4 questions at his presser and then he bailed."

Bwahahahaha!

Posted by: schrodingerscat | February 23, 2011 4:13 PM | Report abuse

Still looking for more details, but apparently Little Hosni Walker only took 4 questions at his presser and then he bailed.

LOL

Posted by: suekzoo1 | February 23, 2011 4:02 PM

.........................

The Koch Got His Tongue!!!

Posted by: Liam-still | February 23, 2011 4:17 PM | Report abuse

Troll, thought you might like that, thanks for making it seem so close and worth it. The path to righteousness is steep and narrow and the wages of sin are death, but human progress is part of evol sorry, intelligent design. As for leaving off an apostrophe, if I were perfect, I wouldn't still be struggling up the Calvinist Trail now would I?

Posted by: shrink2 | February 23, 2011 4:18 PM | Report abuse

The people who are upset about this are the same unAmerican a-holes who were cheering Bush and Cheney on as they shat on the Constitution.

Posted by: thomasmc1957 | February 23, 2011 4:20 PM | Report abuse

I just want to know one thing from the Tea Party experts here...

Is having the Federal government tell you who you can and cannot marry Big Government or Small Government?

I mean. I know it changes from issue to issue, day to day (and depending on what party is calling the shots). Just want to know your take on this for, well, for today. Thx.

Posted by: ronnieandrush | February 23, 2011 4:22 PM | Report abuse

In serious news:

Report Says GOP Spending Cuts Would Hurt Economy

A confidential Goldman Sachs report, which was obtained by ABC News, argues that the spending cuts passed last week by the House of Representatives would be a drag on the economy, cutting economic growth by about two percent of GDP.

The Financial Times quotes Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY): "This nonpartisan study proves that the House Republicans' proposal is a recipe for a double-dip recession. Just as the economy is beginning to pick up a little steam, the Republican budget would snuff out any chance of recovery. This analysis puts a dagger through the heart of their 'cut-and-grow' fantasy."

http://politicalwire.com/archives/2011/02/23/report_says_gop_spending_cuts_would_hurt_economy.html

http://blogs.abcnews.com/thenote/2011/02/goldman-sachs-house-spending-cuts-will-hurt-economic-growth.html

http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/0369c1bc-3f71-11e0-a1ba-00144feabdc0.html

In not quite as serious news... there are a whole lot of hilarious comments on the TPM Jeff Cox thread

http://tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo.com/2011/02/indiana-dep-ag-loses-job-after-advocating-live-ammunition-for-protesters.php

Posted by: ronnieandrush | February 23, 2011 4:31 PM | Report abuse

"Calvinist Trail now would I?"

You just don't strike me as a predestination kind of person. Though, YMMV.;-)

Posted by: TrollMcWingnut | February 23, 2011 4:32 PM | Report abuse

"Still looking for more details, but apparently Little Hosni Walker only took 4 questions at his presser and then he bailed.

LOL

Posted by: suekzoo1"

One of them should have pretended to be David Koch. Walker would have spilled everything. How was the presser itself?

And Obama has always been for gay marriage. He just pretends not to be for political reasons.

Posted by: DDAWD | February 23, 2011 4:33 PM | Report abuse

@ronnieandrush "I just want to know one thing from the Tea Party experts here...

Is having the Federal government tell you who you can and cannot marry Big Government or Small Government?

I mean. I know it changes from issue to issue, day to day (and depending on what party is calling the shots). Just want to know your take on this for, well, for today. Thx."

While I don't consider myself part of the tea party, I'd do away with government recognition of marriage all together.

I.e. rather than having the government make distinctions on who counts as "married" and who doesn't, which primarily affect who is eligible for various benefits and tax breaks, I'd revamp the tax system to have everyone file as individuals, and eliminate married filing jointly.

For purposes of insurance benefits, joint property, and power of attorney people would have to specifically designate who they wanted to be "paired" with. It could be your wife, girlfriend, roommate, etc. For purposes of the law, the exact status of the relationship (Facebook: It's Complicated) wouldn't matter. Basically, in the eyes of the law, everything becomes a civil union.

This would get the government out of the business of designating what is and is not "marriage". What the various religious bodies decide would have no more legal significance than a bar mitzvah does on being legally charged as an adult.

Posted by: jnc4p | February 23, 2011 4:35 PM | Report abuse

Well, shazam, Goober sez:

Looks like the Koch Brothers opened a lobbying office in Madison WI just two days after Woof Woof Walker became governor.

The expanded lobbying effort by the Koch brothers in Wisconsin raises red flags in particular because of a little discussed provision in Walker's repair bill that would allow Koch Industries and other private companies to purchase state-owned power plants in no-bid contracts.

http://host.madison.com/ct/news/local/govt-and-politics/article_7e8aa25a-3ec0-11e0-9923-001cc4c03286.html

Posted by: 12BarBluesAgain | February 23, 2011 4:35 PM | Report abuse

@DDAW: "He just pretends not to be for political reasons."

Do you know where we can find the complete list of issues that the President is lying about?

Posted by: sbj3 | February 23, 2011 4:38 PM | Report abuse

"What the various religious bodies decide would have no more legal significance than a bar mitzvah does on being legally charged as an adult." Wait'll I tell my buddy Sol why is still such a schmuck, he never did grow up.

Posted by: shrink2 | February 23, 2011 4:39 PM | Report abuse

an interesting question ethan.

I don't presume to speak for the tea party, but for myself I don't much care who you marry and I don' think that the government should either deny or promote any ideas on this at all.

To quote Sarah Palin: we all have a little libertarian in us.

I seek to view social issues through libertarian eyes. It isn't always easy because our government is inextricably intertwined with our society, but I definitely believe that as much as possible, the government should leave us alone.

You, on the other hand are coming at this from the exact opposite point of view. You seek to meddle in the lives of citizens when it advances your silly agenda (global warming? laughable) but demand that hands off when that also advances your agenda. In your world view the government can dictate all manner of things in our lives, but if we want to kill an unborn child, well hands off. If the majority in society thinks gay marriage is a bad idea, too bad the liberals want it, so they will seek to have it mandated. the liberal dream: everything that isn't mandatory is banned.

Frankly I think that gay marriage would very entertaining. Well not gay marriage per se, but I can imagine a TV series based on Gay Divorce.

but I also understand the point of view of those who oppose gay marriage. They have an enviable track record at the ballot box as the bratty response to the loss in CA clearly demonstrated.

Posted by: skipsailing28 | February 23, 2011 4:40 PM | Report abuse

"""While I don't consider myself part of the tea party, I'd do away with government recognition of marriage all together. """

That's not what I asked.

Is it Big Government or Small Government?

And while you're at it...

Forcing women to give birth to children rather than have a Constitutionally-approved medical procedure...

Big Government or Small Government?

Thx.

Posted by: ronnieandrush | February 23, 2011 4:40 PM | Report abuse

Re; Obama's beliefs on Gay marriage-

Maybe we should ask the ghosts of Abraham Lincoln or LBJ about how *they* dealt with their disconnects.

Its not as easy as it looks, folks.

Posted by: ChuckinDenton | February 23, 2011 4:41 PM | Report abuse

"""I don't presume to speak for the tea party, but for myself I don't much care who you marry and I don' think that the government should either deny or promote any ideas on this at all."""

Why do wingers refuse to answer my question? The question was...

Are these two circumstances:

Big Government or Small Government?

No explanation required. Just an answer. Thx.

Posted by: ronnieandrush | February 23, 2011 4:43 PM | Report abuse

12BB, everybody is either (1) looking into why that no bid power plant sale clause is in that bill, or (2) waiting to see what they find...

In other news, how about the technical correction, right on cue...

Posted by: shrink2 | February 23, 2011 4:44 PM | Report abuse

I guess when you see the tidal wave heading your way, you'll grasp at anything that you think might keep you afloat. If Obozzo or his trolls think this 2% vote grab is going to stop Americans from getting their country back, he needs to loosen the sphincter muscle from around his pencil shaped neck. Maybe some of you gay rights types can lend a hand with that unpleasant task. All this is going to do is solidify the conviction that this scumbag is as wrong for the country as those miscreant deviants who support him.

And before you show your hypocritical ignorance by stereotyping me - I don't hunt, I haven't been to church in 20+ years, am not rich, was raised in Boston, MA, work at a leading edge, eco friendly company mainly because I love nature, and serve breakfast to 165 homeless people 2X week which is always 10X more than those libturds I talk to who put down conservatives as selfish and just out for themselves.

Posted by: Bcamp55 | February 23, 2011 4:45 PM | Report abuse

@ronnieandrush "That's not what I asked.

Is it Big Government or Small Government?

And while you're at it...

Forcing women to give birth to children rather than have a Constitutionally-approved medical procedure...

Big Government or Small Government?

Thx."

Big Government to both. But this is easy for me as I'm an atheist libertarian. Also, I don't believe either has anything to do with the Constitution.

Here's one back at you: If banning gay marriage is unconstitutional, what about plural marriage?

Should laws against bigamy be "subject to the more permissive standard of review or whether a more rigorous standard, under which laws targeting minority groups with a history of discrimination are viewed with suspicion by the courts, should apply."

Posted by: jnc4p | February 23, 2011 4:46 PM | Report abuse

"Do you know where we can find the complete list of issues that the President is lying about?

Posted by: sbj3"

Why do you care what he actually tells the truth about?

Posted by: DDAWD | February 23, 2011 4:48 PM | Report abuse

I love nature, and serve breakfast to 165 homeless people 2X week which is always 10X more than those libturds I talk to who put down conservatives as selfish and just out for themselves.
------------------------------------------------------
You had me until you got to "libturds".

You're a real Mother Theresa, eh?

Posted by: 12BarBluesAgain | February 23, 2011 4:49 PM | Report abuse

"While I don't consider myself part of the tea party, I'd do away with government recognition of marriage all together. "

Isn't marriage unconstitutional? I mean, I am paying a fine on my taxes for being a swingin bachelor.

Posted by: DDAWD | February 23, 2011 4:49 PM | Report abuse

Why do wingers refuse to answer my question? The question was...

Are these two circumstances:

Big Government or Small Government?

No explanation required. Just an answer. Thx.

Posted by: ronnieandrush
============================================
Maybe because your "question" constitutes mindless, simplistic drivel much like........ Hey - if liberals are so pro animal rights, why do they drive cars slaughtering millions of helpless creatures on the roadway every year?

Get the point moron?

Posted by: Bcamp55 | February 23, 2011 4:50 PM | Report abuse

Don't like my answer ethan?

Too bad for you.

HOpe that works out for ya.

Ask Shrink for some meds, that seems to be his answer to irritation these days.

I'm sure he can perscribe something that will soooooothe your jangled little nerves.

Posted by: skipsailing28 | February 23, 2011 4:51 PM | Report abuse

Should laws against bigamy be "subject to the more permissive standard of review or whether a more rigorous standard, under which laws targeting minority groups with a history of discrimination are viewed with suspicion by the courts, should apply."
---------------------------------------------------------------
Are you that reporter from the Deseret News?

Posted by: 12BarBluesAgain | February 23, 2011 4:51 PM | Report abuse

"serve breakfast to 165 homeless people 2X week"

Do you tell them to "get a job"? I mean handing out Bibles is kind of a waste of time. Those freeloaders know what to do with the good book, since it is biodegradable. There is a reason why the old expression includes a stick with the carrots.

Posted by: shrink2 | February 23, 2011 4:52 PM | Report abuse

You had me until you got to "libturds".

You're a real Mother Theresa, eh?

Posted by: 12BarBluesAgain
======================================
Apparently that's the difference between us; I'm not interested in having you and don't really care for you to have me.

Posted by: Bcamp55 | February 23, 2011 4:53 PM | Report abuse

That's just great. Now the government is telling me I have to have sex with other men! Where will it end?

-Most republicans

Posted by: cao091402 | February 23, 2011 4:53 PM | Report abuse

Just out of curiosity, who cares if gays get married to each other? I grew up in Redneck, Oklahoma and remember making jokes and such but my overall attitude was that it didn't bother me what they did as long as they didn't bother me. It was none of my business what consenting adults did behind closed doors or in public restrooms. Ok, sorry, old habits never change. Bad joke. I admit it.

The Constitution didn't say 'no gays' and therefore, unfairly depriving any group of rights not accorded to others seems to cross the line into discrimination regardless of whether that group is formally protected by the various civil rights acts.

If the argument is simply over the use of the term 'marriage' then it sure is costing alot of time and money to solve that. Don't use the term marriage in any legal setting and you won't have a problem. Since it has Biblical origins and since our Constitution protects us from the government infringing upon our freedom of religion, those of us who belong to the 'Church of No Religion' are being subjected to a secular religious ceremony sanctioned by the government every time we buy a marriage license. That's unconstitutional. Leave the term out of the government's legal part in the process and let the parties becoming a couple decide how they'll entitle their union. They can call it anything they want under our 'Freedom of Speech' doctrine. It's nobody else's business.

Rather than forcing people who love each other to buy a ticket from the government, why not just treat it as a voluntary process that people can choose. If they want to be legally treated as a couple, they must declare same officially to be treated as such contractually. If they don't, then the government has no business with it.

When the courts decide whether someone is married under common law, they try to determine if the parties held themselves out publicly as a couple and whether they intended to be a couple. Their intent determines the legal obligation to each other, and their public representation determines the legal obligation to third parties.

Instead, the government should just call marriage something else for the purpose of dispensing 'Couple Declarations' and claim lack of jurisdiction on deciding anything regarding the term 'marrriage' after a certain date for those not grandfathered in by having been married before that date. After all, the word was around far longer than any of these arguments and we have no idea who started it. Maybe the first couple to get married was gay, who knows. The term 'marriage' is not something that can be laid claim to anymore so than the air we breath. If it is possible to lay claim to it, then it's MY word and I want royalties on it's use.

I just wish people would stop wasting my time by tying up my legislators who have better things to waste my time and money on. Yeah, I know, that joke wasn't funny either. What did you expect from a guy named CitizenWeeping, infinite chuckles.

Posted by: CitizenWeeping | February 23, 2011 4:53 PM | Report abuse

@jnc4p: food for thought from Orin Kerr regarding the more rigorous standard:

"If you look at AG Holder’s reasons for why DOJ won’t defend DOMA, it is premised on DOJ’s adoption of a contested theory of the constitutionality of laws regulating gay rights. The letter says that “the President and [the Attorney General] have concluded that classifications based on sexual orientation warrant heightened scrutiny and that, as applied to same-sex couples legally married under state law then, from that perspective, there is no reasonable defense of DOMA.” This theory is not compelled by caselaw. Rather, it’s a possible result, one that is popular in some circles and not in others but that courts have not weighed in on much yet.

"By taking that position, the Obama Administration has moved the goalposts of the usual role of the Executive branch in defending statutes. Instead of requiring DOJ to defend the constitutionality of all federal statutes if it has a reasonable basis to do so, the new approach invests within DOJ a power to conduct an independent constitutional review of the issues, to decide the main issues in the case — in this case, the degree of scrutiny for gay rights issues — and then, upon deciding the main issue, to decide if there is a reasonable basis for arguing the other side. If you take that view, the Executive Branch essentially has the power to decide what legislation it will defend based on whatever views of the Constitution are popular or associated with that Administration. It changes the role of the Executive branch in defending litigation from the traditional dutiful servant of Congress to major institutional player with a great deal of discretion.

"If that approach becomes widely adopted, then it would seem to bring a considerable power shift to the Executive Branch. Here’s what I fear will happen. If Congress passes legislation on a largely party-line vote, the losing side just has to fashion some constitutional theories for why the legislation is unconstitutional and then wait for its side to win the Presidency. As soon as its side wins the Presidency, activists on its side can file constitutional challenges based on the theories; the Executive branch can adopt the theories and conclude that, based on the theories, the legislation is unconstitutional; and then the challenges to the legislation will go undefended."

http://volokh.com/2011/02/23/the-executive-power-grab-in-the-decision-not-to-defend-doma/

Posted by: sbj3 | February 23, 2011 4:53 PM | Report abuse

KW, probably not a great idea to lie about something right on the day you post it.

"In all fairness, when the folks came out with the long knives to eviscerate Sarah, they had •nothing• to go on except that she looked like an attractive Republican woman, thus represented a threat, and had to be taken out, as soon as possible. There was no prank call, she hadn't been a union buster, etc., etc. "

Probably best to lie about this after a week or so. But all I had to do is find the right thread and ctrl+F "nothing" and your nonsense popped right up.

Posted by: DDAWD | February 23, 2011 4:54 PM | Report abuse

@sbj3 "@jnc4p: food for thought from Orin Kerr regarding the more rigorous standard:

"If you look at AG Holder’s reasons for why DOJ won’t defend DOMA, it is premised on DOJ’s adoption of a contested theory of the constitutionality of laws regulating gay rights. The letter says that “the President and [the Attorney General] have concluded that classifications based on sexual orientation warrant heightened scrutiny and that, as applied to same-sex couples legally married under state law then, from that perspective, there is no reasonable defense of DOMA.” This theory is not compelled by caselaw. Rather, it’s a possible result, one that is popular in some circles and not in others but that courts have not weighed in on much yet.

"By taking that position, the Obama Administration has moved the goalposts of the usual role of the Executive branch in defending statutes. Instead of requiring DOJ to defend the constitutionality of all federal statutes if it has a reasonable basis to do so, the new approach invests within DOJ a power to conduct an independent constitutional review of the issues, to decide the main issues in the case — in this case, the degree of scrutiny for gay rights issues — and then, upon deciding the main issue, to decide if there is a reasonable basis for arguing the other side. If you take that view, the Executive Branch essentially has the power to decide what legislation it will defend based on whatever views of the Constitution are popular or associated with that Administration. It changes the role of the Executive branch in defending litigation from the traditional dutiful servant of Congress to major institutional player with a great deal of discretion.

"If that approach becomes widely adopted, then it would seem to bring a considerable power shift to the Executive Branch. Here’s what I fear will happen. If Congress passes legislation on a largely party-line vote, the losing side just has to fashion some constitutional theories for why the legislation is unconstitutional and then wait for its side to win the Presidency. As soon as its side wins the Presidency, activists on its side can file constitutional challenges based on the theories; the Executive branch can adopt the theories and conclude that, based on the theories, the legislation is unconstitutional; and then the challenges to the legislation will go undefended."

http://volokh.com/2011/02/23/the-executive-power-grab-in-the-decision-not-to-defend-doma/"

Well, yes of course. The moment we have another Republican president, the DOJ will cease to defend again constitutional challenges to ObamaCare. If there aren't any pending, I'm sure some can be ginned up in short order.

Posted by: jnc4p | February 23, 2011 4:57 PM | Report abuse

Apparently that's the difference between us; I'm not interested in having you and don't really care for you to have me.
--------------------------------------
I guess you aren't like Mother Theresa. My bad.

More like Dr. Hannibal Lecter, eh?

Posted by: 12BarBluesAgain | February 23, 2011 4:57 PM | Report abuse

"""Big Government to both."""

That is the correct answer.

The Republican social agenda is 100% Big Government.

"""Here's one back at you: If banning gay marriage is unconstitutional, what about plural marriage?"""

I don't know, I'm not a constitutional attorney. My guess is no, it isn't unconstitutional if it is mutually agreed upon and not coercive or one party's rights are in any way infringed upon.

@Braincamp55: "Get the point moron?"

No. I don't get your point. It is nonsensical.

Posted by: ronnieandrush | February 23, 2011 4:58 PM | Report abuse

"If that approach becomes widely adopted, then it would seem to bring a considerable power shift to the Executive Branch. Here’s what I fear will happen. If Congress passes legislation on a largely party-line vote, the losing side just has to fashion some constitutional theories for why the legislation is unconstitutional and then wait for its side to win the Presidency. As soon as its side wins the Presidency, activists on its side can file constitutional challenges based on the theories; the Executive branch can adopt the theories and conclude that, based on the theories, the legislation is unconstitutional; and then the challenges to the legislation will go undefended."

Well, don't fear reality, confront your fear. This is reality. Breathe...just...breathe...

Posted by: shrink2 | February 23, 2011 4:58 PM | Report abuse

@sbj3 Also, I think this tactic was first pioneered in California when the State refused to defend whatever the proposition was on Gay Marriage there.

Posted by: jnc4p | February 23, 2011 4:59 PM | Report abuse

I don't care if two gay men, or two lesbian women want to get married. It affects my marriage in no way. My wife and are perfectly capable of screwing up our marriage, or keeping it intact, all by ourselves.

Gay people had nothing to do with the serial marriages of Rush Limbaugh, Rudi G. Newt G. or any other of those sanctimonious hypocrites.

As for all the other phony excuses about not letting gay couples marry, because that might open the door, for bigamists; what a phony excuse. Straight Couples are allowed to get married now, and that still did not open the door for Bigamists, so how the hell would gay couples getting married do so?!

There are Bigamists living in compounds already, and they have been around, long before gay people started to seek the right to get married.

Religious people are the biggest liars, and hypocrites in society. No lie is too big or too small for them to not tell it, and it is all justified, because they know what some imaginary space creature wants us all to do, and they are just making sure that we all follow the rules of their guy in the cosmos.

Posted by: Liam-still | February 23, 2011 5:01 PM | Report abuse

I'm fine with multiparty marriage. Just let people do what they want.

Posted by: DDAWD | February 23, 2011 5:01 PM | Report abuse

@ronnieandrush """"Here's one back at you: If banning gay marriage is unconstitutional, what about plural marriage?"""

I don't know, I'm not a constitutional attorney. My guess is no, it isn't unconstitutional if it is mutually agreed upon and not coercive or one party's rights are in any way infringed upon."

I'm unclear on your answer, and I might not have been clear in my question. I'll try again:

Do you believe that laws banning bigamy aka plural marriage for consenting adults are unconstitutional under the standard that President Obama and the DOJ are using for declaring the DOMA unconstitutional?

Posted by: jnc4p | February 23, 2011 5:03 PM | Report abuse

@skip johnson: "Don't like my answer ethan? Too bad for you."

Aw man, for a second there I thought you were going to tell me you live in a concealed carry state.

The fact is, you and all the rest of the Big Government Republican Tea Partiers -- who support federal law outlawing same sex marriage and who try to use the government to force the Christian fundamentalist way on all women -- are total hypocrites.

Posted by: ronnieandrush | February 23, 2011 5:03 PM | Report abuse

"Do you know where we can find the complete list of issues that the President is lying about?"

Heh.

Posted by: TrollMcWingnut | February 23, 2011 5:06 PM | Report abuse

The Tea Party that organized massive protests, are outraged at the sight of other people organizing protests.

This is just another example of why Tea Party Members are just a bunch of Stupid Koch Suckers.

Posted by: Liam-still | February 23, 2011 5:08 PM | Report abuse

All, JOhn Boehner's response to Obama on DOMA is very telling:

http://wapo.st/gqlhlI

Posted by: Greg Sargent | February 23, 2011 5:08 PM | Report abuse

@jnc4p: "@Also, I think this tactic was first pioneered in California when the State refused to defend whatever the proposition was on Gay Marriage there."

Goes even further back to prop 186 - when one of three portions was ruled unconstitutional, governor refused to defend any of it.

Posted by: sbj3 | February 23, 2011 5:08 PM | Report abuse

"""Do you believe that laws banning bigamy aka plural marriage for consenting adults are unconstitutional under the standard that President Obama and the DOJ are using for declaring the DOMA unconstitutional?"""

And I'm telling you that I don't know if it is unconstitutional. I would think that it is, but I truly don't know enough to answer one way or another.

Do I support the right to polygamy? Yes, under the circumstances that all parties involved support the marriage/union and if nobody's rights are violated. In those cases, yes, I support polygamy.

Posted by: ronnieandrush | February 23, 2011 5:09 PM | Report abuse

"And before you show your hypocritical ignorance by stereotyping me - I don't hunt, I haven't been to church in 20+ years, am not rich, was raised in Boston, MA, work at a leading edge, eco friendly company mainly because I love nature, and serve breakfast to 165 homeless people 2X week which is always 10X more than those libturds I talk to who put down conservatives as selfish and just out for themselves."

I suspect that the only person who thinks doing volunteer work might justify your intolerance is you. Perhaps that's why you do it. I'd be interested in hearing what you think of the homeless people you're helping.

Heh. No I wouldn't. I'm already sick to my stomach.

Posted by: mmyotis | February 23, 2011 5:11 PM | Report abuse

Clarification:

I would think that it is constitutional, but I truly don't know enough to answer one way or another.

Posted by: ronnieandrush | February 23, 2011 5:11 PM | Report abuse

I'm fine with multiparty marriage. Just let people do what they want.
---------------------------------------------------------
FYI--this was the deal that the LDS had to make for Utah to become a state. I believe that prohibition against plural marriage is in the state's constitution. A curious coincidence? it was the Republican party who had the most trouble with Mormon polygamy.

Posted by: 12BarBluesAgain | February 23, 2011 5:14 PM | Report abuse

Do you know where we can find the complete list of issues that the President is lying about?

Posted by: sbj3 | February 23, 2011 4:38 PM
...................

Can you provide us with the complete list of campaign contributions that you have made to right wing Homophobes?

Sharron Angle.
John McCain.
George W. Bush.

You can add on all the rest of those names.

You keep working to elect people who hate gay people, and yet you keep on complaing that President Obama and Harry Reid are not doing enough, fast enough, to deliver equal rights for you.

I don't think you real want to be emancipated. You like being a servant in that Log Cabin.

Posted by: Liam-still | February 23, 2011 5:31 PM | Report abuse

Hooray; who needs a legislature, or laws, or a Supreme Court. The Constitution says what Obama wants it to say, the LAW is what Obama says the law is; and it shall be enforced by Obama's whim.

Finally we're becoming a land where one man's whim controls the nation instead of being a nation of laws... having rules that apply evenly, and common people being represented in the government and all that crap is boring.

We need a King... all hail King Obama; supreme arbiter of the LAW, the Constitution, and the NATION!

I mean nobody could consider changing a law with the Legislature; or determining the Constitutionality of a law through the Court system... Obama must control all the levers of power directly... for the good of... Obama I guess.

It's amazing that Bush was evil and grasping for power in the minds of liberals; but when Obama decides that he's head of all three branches of government with the total power of all of them... that's perfectly fine I guess.

Posted by: gekkobear | February 23, 2011 5:35 PM | Report abuse

"It's amazing that Bush..."

BIG GOVERNMENT Republican

Posted by: ronnieandrush | February 23, 2011 6:17 PM | Report abuse

AN OATH VIOLATED?

Presidential Oath of Office:
I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States.
Article II, Section 1, of the Constitution


A Primary Presidential Duty under the Constitution:
The President, according to the Constitution, must "take care that the laws be faithfully executed",

President Obama has instructed the Justice Department:
To no longer defend the constitutionality of the Defense of Marriage Act, or DOMA, the legal prohibition on federal recognition of same-sex marriages.

Once again...An Oath Violated?

Posted by: suenjim | February 26, 2011 8:32 AM | Report abuse

gekkobear and suenjin--Get back to us when you can figure out the difference between "defend" and "enforce." Right now, you have no idea what you're talking about.

Posted by: csouza101 | March 1, 2011 12:21 PM | Report abuse

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