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Posted at 11:58 AM ET, 02/23/2011

Breaking News: Obama action against DOMA coming

By Jonathan Capehart

A well-placed and trusted source tells me that, any minute now, Attorney General Eric Holder will issue a statement announcing that it will no longer defend so-called Defense of Marriage Act lawsuits in court. The source believes DOJ had come to the conclusion that heightened scrutiny would apply, and that these cases cannot be defended in court. A 530d letter has been sent to Congress informing it that, if it wants to defend the statute, it is free to do so. A case is pending now that has a filing deadline of March 11.

This is huge, folks. By definitively stating that gay men and lesbians deserve heightened scrutiny, the Obama administration is declaring that there is no government interest in perpetuating the discrimination aggrieved parties are trying to redress.

UPDATE, 12:40 p.m.: Here is the statement from the attorney general. For gay men and lesbians -- for all Americans who believe in equity and fairness -- the fourth paragraph is key.

By Jonathan Capehart  | February 23, 2011; 11:58 AM ET
Categories:  Capehart  | Tags:  Jonathan Capehart  
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Next: Edie and Jerry: The real people behind DOJ's shift on DOMA

Comments

This is exciting !

President Obama finally emerging from his dome of silence to condemn Libya !!

Oh wait that not happening... it was Peru today that condemned Libya and broke relations.

Sorry... our man-child President has other business to attend too.

Posted by: pvilso24 | February 23, 2011 12:19 PM | Report abuse

Ignorance is fun, isn't it pvilso24?

DOJ is part of the executive branch.

Libya...isn't part of the US! OUR president has spoken out many times against Libya's dictator. OUR Sec of State is working daily on Mid East matters. No matter how delusional you might be, we can not dictate who runs other countries. Trying to results in things like our involvement in Iraq.

DOMA violates constitutionally-guaranteed freedom for a significant minority of Americans.

Posted by: seriousfun | February 23, 2011 12:28 PM | Report abuse

"DOMA violates constitutionally-guaranteed freedom for a significant minority of Americans."

How so seriousfun?

Posted by: LouAsheby | February 23, 2011 12:36 PM | Report abuse

Cue the Chuck Lane piece condemning this move in the name of Gabby Giffords....

Posted by: tjtucker | February 23, 2011 12:37 PM | Report abuse

Well I guess we know why Obama has been so quiet lately. He has been working on huge issues... No not the huge budget shortfall that The Dems in the Senate are ignoring by going on a little vaca instead of agreeing on a continuing resolution to keep our government funded, No not condeming the mass murder of pro democracy protesters in Lybia, No not trying to get the 600 plus US citizens out of Lybia before it goes up in flames, No not addressing why we shadowed pirates with US hostages for days before sitting by as those hostages were murdered, No what Obama and his Dem admin have been spending their time on is re-defining a bedrock institution against the express wishes of the majority of the US citizens. Solid B+ Barry.

Posted by: scottlps | February 23, 2011 12:46 PM | Report abuse

There is no constitutional right to marriage. None.

Supporters of gay marriage say that the equal protection clause of the 14th amendment gives them the right to receive state recognition of their relationships.

However, using this logic, all farmers are entitled to a farm subsidy. After all, corn farmers get money from the government to grow their crops; but soybean and peanut farmers do not get money. So the solution is to give all farmers money, right? Think about it...

Posted by: goodnoyz1 | February 23, 2011 12:49 PM | Report abuse

@Scottlps

Actually, US citizens are split nearly perfectly down the middle on either side of the gay marriage issue. I don't recall which side it falls on now, but a majority of 52% or so isn't representative of the express wishes US citizens, just half of US citizens. In addition, that statistic is for the question of "Should gay marriage be allowed?" Many Americans don't support gay marriage, but do support civil unions, etc.

As far as your bedrock institution, I think you should look to your own bed. The divorce rate among Christians is higher than that among the secular populace, and there are plenty of other things threatening "the sanctity of marriage" from inside and outside.

Gay people just want the right to be treated like everyone else who would like to be part of the bedrock institution. If we weren't interested in supporting the institution of marriage, why would we want to be married so badly?

Posted by: ABurstofLogic | February 23, 2011 1:01 PM | Report abuse

goodnoyz,

There is a constitutionally protected right to marriage according to the US Supreme Court in the ruling in Loving v. Virginia.

Posted by: Coloradem1 | February 23, 2011 1:01 PM | Report abuse

DOMA has already won in court many times.
Those judgements will still stand if the DOJ doesn't take up a case.

Posted by: Phdx3 | February 23, 2011 1:06 PM | Report abuse

DOMA doesn't prevent anyone from getting married. It merely says that one state's laws can not be forced on another states laws.
This just makes Obama and his DOJ look stupid.

Posted by: Phdx3 | February 23, 2011 1:08 PM | Report abuse

Coloradem1,

Loving v. Virginia addressed race-based legal restrictions on marriage. It did not address gay marriage, polygamy bans, etc.

But you are avoiding my point -- if the equal protection clause of the 14th amendment is an argument for gay marriage, then all farmers are entitled to a farm subsidy. After all, corn farmers get money from the government to grow their crops; but soybean and peanut farmers do not.

Posted by: goodnoyz1 | February 23, 2011 1:13 PM | Report abuse

So King Obama has decided that he can ignore any laws he doesn't like? Keep that in mind liberals next time a republican is in office, which will be soon.

Posted by: robtr | February 23, 2011 1:14 PM | Report abuse

DOMA stands in contrast to the ruling in Loving V. Virginia...which said that, to borrow from Phdx3, "one states marriage laws can be forced on all other states under the full faith and credit act".

Haters, lick your wounds. You just lost.

Posted by: Coloradem1 | February 23, 2011 1:14 PM | Report abuse

@Scottlps, you're missing the point. The administration is saying they're NOT going to spend time in court defending DOMA.

I suppose you could just amend your post to add defending DOMA to the list of things you think they're not doing that you want them to.

Posted by: novanglus | February 23, 2011 1:14 PM | Report abuse

This is not about homosexual marriage. This is about a sitting American president refusing to enforce a Federal law. The president of the United States is required by the Constitution to enforce Federal laws, regardless of whether he agrees with them or not. And refusing to obey the requirements of the Constitution is an act of treason.

Mr. Obama, you need to re-think this one.

Posted by: mjdudeck | February 23, 2011 1:15 PM | Report abuse

This is not about homosexual marriage. This is about a sitting American president refusing to enforce a Federal law. The president of the United States is required by the Constitution to enforce Federal laws, regardless of whether he agrees with them or not. And refusing to obey the requirements of the Constitution is an act of treason.

Mr. Obama, you need to re-think this one.

Posted by: mjdudeck | February 23, 2011 1:15 PM | Report abuse

this makes no sense - either repeal it or enforce it...

Posted by: ballgame | February 23, 2011 1:18 PM | Report abuse

why does obama go gay every time he looks useless...

Posted by: DwightCollins | February 23, 2011 1:19 PM | Report abuse

If we set aside the emotion of what this specific action involves, and look at the process, it's disturbing. Basically, the President is choosing to not enforce the law of the land. That mindset is disturbing.

I would rather the President LEAD (what a concept) at repealing a law they found objectionable rather than simply willfully choosing not to enforce the law, thus effectively negating the law without due process of the legislature.

What other laws is the President going to negate? To date, immigration laws and now DOMA. The ends do NOT justify the means.

Posted by: RichmondGiant | February 23, 2011 1:21 PM | Report abuse

DoJ will no longer be defending DOMA because, constitutionally, it is indefensible. There may be a political rationale but, legally, it's hollow. American jurisprudence does not tolerate 2nd-class citizenship.

Posted by: merko | February 23, 2011 1:21 PM | Report abuse

This is not about homosexual marriage. This is about a sitting American president refusing to enforce a Federal law. The president of the United States is required by the Constitution to enforce Federal laws, regardless of whether he agrees with them or not. And refusing to obey the requirements of the Constitution is an act of treason.

Mr. Obama, you need to re-think this one.
==================

HA! If that were the case, Bush would have been arrested and imprison years ago for issuing over 150 signing statements basically stating he didn't agree with the law passed by Congress and would ignore it....and he did.

But just to relieve you of any worry, signing statements have been issued by presidents since James Monroe...and I always took Monroe as a treasonous b@stard! LOL

Next Republigoon fallacy?

Posted by: B-rod | February 23, 2011 1:23 PM | Report abuse

DOMA doesn't prevent anyone from getting married. It merely says that one state's laws can not be forced on another states laws.
This just makes Obama and his DOJ look stupid.

Posted by: Phdx3
-------------------
Straight people married in all 50 states have the right to have their marriage recognized by other states and the federal government. Gay people do not have this right. DOMA was never intended to "prevent" people from marrying, it was intended to discriminate against gay people.

Posted by: jake14 | February 23, 2011 1:25 PM | Report abuse

jake14,

Great! So when Utah passes a Polygamy marriage law, all other states must recognize it.

Posted by: goodnoyz1 | February 23, 2011 1:29 PM | Report abuse

It's actually a myth that the Justice Dept. must defend every law. Every modern administration including those under George W Bush, Clinton, George H.W. Bush and Reagan have refused to defend certain laws in court.

By refusing to defend DOMA, the administration has taken a stance that DOMA is indefensible. This is not an unconstitutional stance.

Posted by: scooterj2003 | February 23, 2011 1:30 PM | Report abuse

Does this mean that Obama supports marriage in US courts of all transgender illegal aliens to Democratic State Senators from Wisconsin?

Posted by: richard36 | February 23, 2011 1:30 PM | Report abuse

It's actually a myth that the Justice Dept. must defend every law. Every modern administration including those under George W Bush, Clinton, George H.W. Bush and Reagan have refused to defend certain laws in court.

By refusing to defend DOMA, the administration has taken a stance that DOMA is indefensible. This is not an unconstitutional stance.

Posted by: scooterj2003 | February 23, 2011 1:30 PM | Report abuse
==========================================
The fact that this procedure has been done before doesn't make it right. It's still disturbing.

DOMA has already stood the "constitutionality test" in court. That's not an issue. We may not agree with the ruling of the court, but we can't claim it's "not constitutional". The administration has taken a safe stance. Rather than guaranteeing their vision of a fair marriage law by leading the change of the law, the President has taken the gutless approach.

Opponents of DOMA may rejoice now, but you have nothing to feel secure in. The next president may choose to enforce the law. Then where are you? Back where you were.

This is just another example of "check the box" politicking from Washington. A talking point at election time, but in reality they have avoided actually dealing with the issue.

Posted by: RichmondGiant | February 23, 2011 1:35 PM | Report abuse

Boy, you people who are saying that "Obama is not going to enforce the law" apparently cannot be bothered to read the letter Holder sent the orange guy in which he clearly stated that DOMA will continue to be enforced as the law of the land until congress repeals it or the US Supreme Court striked it down.

Do your research before spouting off an opinion that is not based in reality.

Posted by: Coloradem1 | February 23, 2011 1:50 PM | Report abuse

"The fact that this procedure has been done before doesn't make it right. It's still disturbing."

--------------------

What is "right" and what is "disturbing" are subjective moral and emotional standards, not objective legal standards. The argument was raised that Obama is committing treason by refusing to defend federal laws. However, doing so is not a treasonous act because the Constitution and the controlling precedent do not require that the Justice Dept. defend every federal law when it is challenged. If the Justice Dept. views a law, or portions of a law, as indefensible, it has no obligation to defend it.

Posted by: scooterj2003 | February 23, 2011 1:55 PM | Report abuse

@ABurstofLogic, that is false. Americans are NOT evenly divided on this issue. In 100% (one hundred percent) of the States in which this issue has been put to a vote, it has been defeated. Granted, some more narrowly than others. But to say Americans are anything approaching evenly divided shows either you are biased, grossly misinformed, or have zero understanding of statistics. Same-sex "marriage" is not legal in any State in the U.S. And for the President to say he will not back up the States which make the Union means he is approaching treason, if not already guilty of it.

Posted by: mjdudeck | February 23, 2011 1:59 PM | Report abuse

Boy, you people who are saying that "Obama is not going to enforce the law" apparently cannot be bothered to read the letter Holder sent the orange guy in which he clearly stated that DOMA will continue to be enforced as the law of the land until congress repeals it or the US Supreme Court striked it down.

Do your research before spouting off an opinion that is not based in reality.

Posted by: Coloradem1
=========================================
You're joking, right. We must not have read the same statement. As the author of this thread noted, read paragraph 4
"The President has also concluded that Section 3 of DOMA, as applied to legally married same-sex couples, fails to meet that standard and is therefore unconstitutional. Given that conclusion, the President has instructed the Department not to defend the statute in such cases."

If you check your Constitution, the President does not have the authority to determine what is and is not Constitutional. The SCOTUS took that power to itself in 1803.

Rather than call upon Congress to change the law, the President has announced he will not defend the law in court. If you are convicted of a crime, and the government refuses to defend itself on appeal, you win by default. It's the same thing as not enforcing the law.

As previously stated, that's fine for the next two years. But since the administration is doing nothing to actually change the law, there's no protection. It's a farce.

Posted by: RichmondGiant | February 23, 2011 2:05 PM | Report abuse

Great! So when Utah passes a Polygamy marriage law, all other states must recognize it.

Posted by: goodnoyz1
___________________________________________
Goodnoyz1,
Yes. See
U.S. Const. art. IV, ยง 1, Full faith & credit. Also, U.S. Const. art VI, cl. 2, Supreme law of the land. Constitution trumps public law....

Posted by: mini1071 | February 23, 2011 2:09 PM | Report abuse

The argument was raised that Obama is committing treason by refusing to defend federal laws. However, doing so is not a treasonous act because the Constitution and the controlling precedent do not require that the Justice Dept. defend every federal law when it is challenged. If the Justice Dept. views a law, or portions of a law, as indefensible, it has no obligation to defend it.

Posted by: scooterj2003
==========================================
I never asserted the president was committing treason. Go pick a fight with someone else.

Congress defines the law of the land, and the president signs, or vetoes, those laws. You may be comfortable giving a president the power to negate the law through lack of enforcement - especially if you agree with the result of the president's decision at the time - I'm not. The Executive branch has taken too much power to itself as it is.

The president needs to grow a backbone and work with Congress to repeal DOMA or remove Section 3. Until it's struck down in court or repealed, it's still the law of the land. His political maneuvering to score points with the GLBT community in next year's election with this hollow "victory" is only slightly less disturbing than the many people that seem to be falling for it.

Posted by: RichmondGiant | February 23, 2011 2:13 PM | Report abuse

Question: Since when does a president decide what laws to enforce?

Answer: Since Obama was sworn in as president.

Examples: Immigration Law. Several other states (MO, RI) have similar laws to AZ but Obama singled out AZ. Obama does not enforce laws against Sanctuary Cities because he is for open borders. Obama does not enforce voting rights infractions if the perps are black panthers. The President makes exception to grant UAW favorable status in GM takeover vis a vis the bond holders. The President foments union members in WI to call a wild cat strike.

Posted by: jkk1943 | February 23, 2011 2:13 PM | Report abuse

The folks arguing for and against DOMA are totally missing the point. If you don't like the law pass a new one. The executive branch does not decide what laws it will or will not enforce. This is the rule of the dictator and street agitator, not a POTUS. Judging by this action and his vocal and financial support of the wildcat strikers in WI I am beginning to wonder what country I am in.

Posted by: jkk1943 | February 23, 2011 2:18 PM | Report abuse

some will say that if this is ok...
sharia law is ok...
are American women ready to be treated the way sharia law says they should be treated...

Posted by: DwightCollins | February 23, 2011 2:29 PM | Report abuse

RichmondGiant, I never asserted that you made that statement. I asserted the statement was made.

I'm not certain what you mean by "negate" (I've never heard that term used in a legal context), but refusing to defend a law is not the same thing as refusing to enforce it, nor does the latter naturally flow from the former. As you noted, DOMA is still a federal law until Congress repeals it. The law is per se enforced, it's just that as of now, the Justice Dept. is under no obligation to defend it when it's challenged in federal court.

Obama doesn't want to "work with Congress" to repeal DOMA, because that would probably be considered an unreasonable exercise of the executive branch powers to which you seem to adamantly opposed. Obama is doing what is within his power to send a message to Congress that DOMA is unconstitutional.

Posted by: scooterj2003 | February 23, 2011 2:36 PM | Report abuse

Actually, this is not all bad news for America. It proves, once and for all, that the Obama regime is held hostage by an assortment of homosexual, special rights groups. They have Obama by his pointy tail now and they aren't letting go.

This will help seal Obama's fate as our nexy one-term president. Look at the Gallup map. Most of his former, deep-blue is fading like an old pair of Levis.

He is becoming a fringe president. Only left-wing fringers are nutty about him now.

Barack Hussein Obama, the one-term wonder!

Posted by: battleground51 | February 23, 2011 2:38 PM | Report abuse

Obama doesn't want to "work with Congress" to repeal DOMA, because that would probably be considered an unreasonable exercise of the executive branch powers to which you seem to adamantly opposed. Obama is doing what is within his power to send a message to Congress that DOMA is unconstitutional.

Posted by: scooterj2003 | February 23, 2011
============================================
No, the President is free to suggest whatever he wants to Congress, and may inform Congress of what he will, or will not, veto. That's what I meant by "work with Congress". That's not an unreasonable exercise of executive power. That's leadership.

Cherry picking what laws will be enforced or defended IS an unreasonable exercise of executive power. The Executive is usurping the role of the legislative and judiciary branches. The legislative defines the laws, the judiciary applies the laws. And, since 1804, the judiciary decides what is and is not constitutional.

The net result of this kind of action is a roller coaster of enforcement. Will GLBT marriage rights be the same under the next president while DOMA stands? Maybe, maybe not. Of course, that can have legal repercussions as well.

Posted by: RichmondGiant | February 23, 2011 2:45 PM | Report abuse

Since no State in the Union has voted to legalize same-sex marriage, the statement in Holder's letter about "as applied to same-sex couples legally married under state law...l" is fallacious. There is no such thing as a legally-married same-sex couple in the United States.

Posted by: mjdudeck | February 23, 2011 2:45 PM | Report abuse

The argument that "not defending" and "not enforcing" are somehow two separate things is laughable. Only a rube would believe Holder's lawyer-speak as being anything but an abandonment of this Federal law.

Posted by: mjdudeck | February 23, 2011 2:48 PM | Report abuse

Since no State in the Union has voted to legalize same-sex marriage, the statement in Holder's letter about "as applied to same-sex couples legally married under state law...l" is fallacious. There is no such thing as a legally-married same-sex couple in the United States.

Posted by: mjdudeck | February 23, 2011 2:45 PM | Report abuse
========================================
I believe that's factually incorrect. As I recall, it's legal in Vermont and Massachusetts. I'm not familiar with the current state of affairs in CA. I think it's close to being legal, if not already so, in IL, CN, and NH. But I'll readily defer to someone closer to the data on those states. It's not a big issue on my radar.

Posted by: RichmondGiant | February 23, 2011 2:50 PM | Report abuse

People are failing to distinguish between the administration enforcing a current law, which Holder's statement unequivocally states in the last paragraph of the statement will continue ("Section 3 of DOMA will continue to remain in effect unless Congress repeals it or there is a final judicial finding that strikes it down, and the President has informed me that the Executive Branch will continue to enforce the law"), and defending the constitutionality of the law in court, which prior posters have correctly stated the administration has no constitutional obligation to do.

Also, for the poster who stated that same-sex marriage is not legal in any state (I'll leave off the incendiary quotation marks around the word marriage), that is absolutely incorrect. Same-sex marriage is currently legal in MA, CT, IA, NH, VT, as well as in DC, and such marriages are also legally recognized in (but not able to be performed in NY, RI, and MD).

Posted by: tjilani | February 23, 2011 2:51 PM | Report abuse

Well, DwightCollins, at least this much is true. If sharia law were ever to be the law of the land here, gay-marriage would be punishable by death. You all think Republicans are old-fashioned in our beliefs? Try telling a follower of Islam that you want same-sex marriage.

Posted by: mjdudeck | February 23, 2011 2:52 PM | Report abuse

No, Mr. Capehart, it is the last paragraph, not the fourth, that is key. In synopsis, it says that we think the law is unconstitutional, but we will continue to enforce it, but we won't defend it's constitutionality in court. Nice bit of circular dodging there. Hint to plaintiff's bar, claim unconstitutionality and we'll drop the case. Then what's the point in enforcing the law. In fact, if the law is unconstitutional, then isn't Obama breaking his oath of office simply by enforcing it.

Posted by: GnirJ | February 23, 2011 2:58 PM | Report abuse

Stupid law shouldn't be defended anyway. Why should I, or anyone else, care how another person chooses to live their own life? Conservatives complain about government overreach, about the size of government, about taking away personal rights and liberty, and yet have the nerve to demand such laws. Two-faced doesn't begin to describe such attitudes.

Posted by: Albert911emt | February 23, 2011 3:09 PM | Report abuse

If you read the AG's statement, as few apparently have, you will see that the Presidents direction is far narrower than enforcing or not enforcing a law - which he is bound to do. Rather, Holder says that in the narrower venue of the 2nd Circuit, where no judicial standard is binding, the Administration will not argue for the consitutionality of section 3, the federal definition, with a standard that they have determined to be legally weak.

Posted by: mini1071 | February 23, 2011 3:13 PM | Report abuse

Hello

First i was disgusted when i read the first comment then more & more nauseous as i went further down the pg. I can not believe that their are so many uneducated, real world people in this world. All the hate?? Who taught you to hate?? I am sure it was not my god as he is a loving respectful God that forgives even the worst of criminals if they are true in their heart. God does not codify bigotry!! We can not tell any one how to live their lives in a free country we are not a theocracy so we can not base our decisions on our morals because our morals are what? They are our religious beliefs that we were raised with. These morals or values are to help us become better people to have a better life than our parents as they all want. I am sure you all are not rich snobs that care only about what you want to be allowed in our great free equal rights for all country but it saddens me that so many people here are being so rude & hateful. We can only pray that you read your Bible to see how loving & merciful our God is that he LOVES everyone. Do any of you remember the golden rule?? do unto others as you would have them do unto you, Let the first person without sin cast the first stone, do not judge others lest you be judged?? Anyone remember these??? these are some of the most important rules of relationships with other people to live peacefully do you not want peace in your life?? Over half of the bi national couples from this country are republican the others are democrat or liberal poles done by a legal rights organization and these people can not be politically active from another country. It is nearly impossible. So before all you haters spread your devilish hate please educate yourselves if you can find the time in between your hateful remarks.

Posted by: sweetpeasimluv | February 23, 2011 3:14 PM | Report abuse

@GnirJ, thank you for putting this into perspective. "if the law is unconstitutional, isn't Obama breaking his oath of office simply by enforcing it?" But for those who think that the president is some form of a monarch/dictator, rather than a servant of the Constitution, why would such blatant contradictions be an issue? Isn't the king allowed to contradict himself?

Posted by: mjdudeck | February 23, 2011 3:14 PM | Report abuse

mini1071, in my reading of the memo it appears that the Justice Dept.'s application of the strict scrutiny measure does not only apply to pending cases in the 2nd Circuit. ("I will instruct Department attorneys to advise courts in other pending DOMA litigation of the President's and my conclusions that a heightened standard should apply, that Section 3 is unconstitutional under that standard and that the Department will cease defense of Section 3.")

Posted by: scooterj2003 | February 23, 2011 3:24 PM | Report abuse

Typical incompetent imbecile we are forced to call president for another 21 months. Who cares if the Middle east is collapsing as we speak, let's make sure we establish the fact that under this moron, certain segments of society are above the rule of law at home. First the financial fabric of the country is decimated by this ignoramus now the social fabric is in his sights. What's next - Oh, I think those two are enough for once anti-American to attack.

ONE AND DONE FOR THIS SCUM!!!

Posted by: Bcamp55 | February 23, 2011 3:38 PM | Report abuse

Isn't this intentional "Malfeasance in Office", an impeachable offense???!!!

This reminds me of their refusal to enforce immigration laws too - Another thing that they should be impeached for.

They are OBLIGATED to enforce and defend laws, whether they like them or not. Only the Courts and Legislature can decide whether a law should be enforced or not. It's the President's and Attorney General's responsibility to carry that out.

Posted by: iluv9mm | February 23, 2011 3:46 PM | Report abuse

You people arguing for this law are missing the point.
DOMA is a discriminatory policy, enacted specifically to prevent states from having to recognize gay marriages preformed in other states. Now it may have some constitutional grounding in that states may have the right to ignore other states laws, but a state doesn't have the right to deny two people marriage and the benefits entitled because of prejudice.
Either that, or it needs to be made that ALL marriages cannot be legally recognized in other states besides where they were preformed. It's only fair.
-----------
On the majority of the American people against gay marriage:
The government has a responsibility to protect the rights of the minority. This is why black people aren't slaves, and why we aren't allowed to go around killing people of other races because we don't like the way they talk.
The majority is always going to use it's powers to abuse the minority, so a higher power HAS to step in and say that they can't do that. Again, this is the reason why interracial marriage is accepted, this is the whole bases of the civil rights movement, of all civil rights movements: the rights of minorities.
I sincerely wish that president Obama would push for the repeal of this bill, but with the House of Representatives controlled by republicans, who are already trying to or have tried to pass a bill banning gay marriage in all states, he would not be able to; deadlock.
Both political parties have made it clear that they will refuse to repeal policies which have one effect which they deem positive, but on the whole are immensely horrid documents.

Posted by: jamesiv3 | February 23, 2011 8:03 PM | Report abuse

A federal district court in Massachusetts ruled the Defense of Marriage Act of 1996 as unconstitutional in July 2010.

The state had argued the law denied benefits such as Medicaid to gay married couples in Massachusetts, where same-sex unions have been legal since 2004.

Judge Joseph L. Tauro agreed that DOMA forces the state to discriminate against its own citizens and ruled that the federal Defense of Marriage law violates the Constitutional right of married same-sex couples to equal protection under the Fifth Amendment.

He also struck down DOMA on Tenth Amendment grounds, stating that marriage is the province of the states, not the federal government. This is a bit of a "pie-in-your-eye" to conservatives: the Tenth Amendment is basically an anti-federalism "states' rights" amendment. Judge Tauro basically took it and said "States' rights? You got it. States get to decide who gets 'married'; not the federal government."

Posted by: Provasek | March 1, 2011 3:21 PM | Report abuse

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