Today Attorney General Eric Holder released a statement from President Obama ordering the Justice Department to stop defending the constitutionality of the controversial Defense of Marriage Act, which states marriage is legally only between one man and one woman.
According to the release:
“The president has concluded that given a number of factors, including a documented history of discrimination, classifications based on sexual orientation should be subject to a more heightened standard of scrutiny.”
Two cases are currently going through the courts that are taking DOMA to task. This new order doesn’t mean that DOMA is no more, the government still has to enforce it, but the attorney general no longer has to defend the law in court. It’s slightly confusing, but just know that this is a big step for gay rights and will hopefully eventually lead to the full repeal of DOMA.
In the below video the White House Secretary addresses Obama’s decision on this issue and also states he is still “grappling” with his views on same-sex marriage. A statement he repeated back in December. However, in 1996 he’s on record saying he’s for same-sex marriage. Today his position is providing gays with “a strong civil union that provides them the protections and the legal rights that married couples have.”
Apparently Speaker John Boehner doesn’t think it’s the “appropriate time” to stop discriminating against gays. He had this to say about Obama’s declaration on DOMA:
“While Americans want Washington to focus on creating jobs and cutting spending, the President will have to explain why he thinks now is the appropriate time to stir up a controversial issue that sharply divides the nation.”
Also Fox News of course decided to interview homophobic Maggie Gallagher of the National Organization for Marriage. She claims Obama has “unilaterally declared that gay is like Black.” (I think that’s the smartest thing I’ve ever heard her say.) You can watch Fox give a platform for her venom below: