Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Yay: Obama administration no longer defending DOMA

Politico 44 via Sullivan:
SHIFT ON GAY MARRIAGE: President Obama has decided that he won’t “defend the constitutionality” of a part of the Defense of Marriage Act that seeks to bar gays from marrying, the Justice Department announced.

The change in the White House’s position means that the administration will no longer argue for that part of the law in two lawsuits filed in the Second Circuit challenging it.

Attorney General Eric Holder said in a statement Wednesday that Obama “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.”

“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,” Holder said. “Given that conclusion, the President has instructed the Department not to defend the statute in such cases.”.

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