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Anti-Gay Activists Desperately Attempt To Defend DOMA

February 24, 2011 3:34 pm ET by Equality Matters staff

Yesterday, the Obama administration announced that it would no longer be defending Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) in court. The decision is a major victory for marriage equality advocates and may pave the way for federal recognition of same-sex marriages. Opponents of marriage equality, however, have been quick to condemn the move, unleashing a litany of outrageous arguments in defense of DOMA. Equality Matters has compiled a sample of these arguments to highlight the lengths to which anti-gay activists will go to defend a clearly unconstitutional and discriminatory law.

Maggie Gallagher, chairman of the National Organization for Marriage (NOM):

This is an end run really around our normal constitutional processes and we're going to be seeing a lot more of this by President Obama now that he faces a Republican dominated Congress. He not only is refusing to defend the law, he has unilaterally declared that gay is like black, that orientation is now subjected to strict scrutiny.  [America Live2/23/11]

Monica Crowley, conservative radio and television commentator:

We are a nation of laws, not of men. We are governed by the rule of law. And what the Constitution says is that the President of the United States doesn't get to decide which laws he likes and which ones he's gonna enforce. He is the Chief Executive. The law is on the books, the Defense of Marriage Act. It is his responsibility under the Constitution to enforce that law. Not just to decide "well I don't like that law so I'm not going to enforce it." To me that is a form of dictatorship. That is Mubarak Obama. You can't just pick and choose which law you're gonna enforce when you're president of the United States or the Attorney General. [America Live2/23/11]

John Boehner, Republican Speaker of the House of Representatives:

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. [Talking Points Memo, 2/23/11]

Mike Huckabee, potential 2012 GOP presidential candidate:

I find it very disappointing that in a time when the economy and world affairs are exploding, the Justice Department would decide that this is what they're going to put on the plate today. [New York Times, 2/24/11]

There is a quantified impact of broken families. There is a $300 billion dad deficit in America every year...that's the amount of money that we spend as taxpayers to pick up the pieces because dads are derelict in their duties. [TPM, 2/23/11]

Gary Bauer, president of American Values:

But this president sees things very differently — he's here to fundamentally transform America, by, among other things, redefining marriage ... Today's news should put to rest any suggestion that Obama has moved to the center. He has just aligned himself with the most radical elements in the culture war who are trying to redefine normalcy. [American Values, 2/23/11]

Ruth Institute, a project of NOM:

Obama never intended to defend marriage and has done nothing but undermine DOMA in court. That was his only objective all along. All of his prior professions that he valued the institution of marriage were nothing more than deliberate acts of deceit devised to win elections. [Ruth Institute, 2/23/11]

The Washington Times editorial:

The Obama administration announced yesterday that it will not defend the constitutionality of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). This is the next step of President Obama's strategy to force the radical homosexual agenda on America against the will of the people and Congress. [The Washington Times, 2/23/11]

Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council:

This decision by President Obama and the Department of Justice is appalling. The President's failure to defend DOMA is also a failure to fulfill his oath to 'faithfully execute the office of President of the United States.' What will be the next law that he will choose not to enforce or uphold? [FRC, 2/23/11]

Andrea Lafferty, executive director of Traditional Values Coalition:

President Obama believes he has "concluded" that the Defense of Marriage Act is unconstitutional, as passed along by Attorney General Eric Holder -- effectively asserting that Obama may rule by whim and decree. We are a nation of laws, not whims. [Right Wing Watch, 2/23/11]

Mathew Staver, founder of the anti-gay religious group Liberty Counsel:

Today President Obama has abandoned his role as President of the United States and transformed his office into the President of the Divided States. He has been the most divisive president in American history. He has today declared war on the American people and the fundamental values that are shared by most Americans. His radicalism resulted in the historical push-back in the 2010 elections. His radicalism today will come back around when the people respond to this betrayal in 2012. [Liberty Counsel "Liberty Alert," 2/23/11]

Bryan Fischer, host of the talk radio program Focal Point:

I think it's a clear sign that we simply cannot avoid engaging on the social issues. Mitch Daniels has called for a truce on social issues and that would be fine if the homosexual lobby was willing to lay down arms, but they're obviously not and this proves it. A truce is nothing more than a surrender. [Rightly Concerned, 2/23/11]

Brian Brown, NOM's executive director:

This is it. The whole ball game. If we back down here, it will be all over. It's a constitutional outrage. Why do we even have courts if the President himself gets to decide which laws are constitutional? [NOM Blog, 2/23/11]

We have not yet begun to fight for marriage. The Democrats are responding to their election loss with a series of extraordinary, extra-constitutional end runs around democracy, whether it's fleeing the state in Wisconsin and Indiana to prevent a vote, or unilaterally declaring homosexuals a protected class under our Constitution, as President Obama just did. We call on the House to intervene to protect DOMA, and to tell the Obama administration they have to respect the limits on their power. This fight is not over, it has only begun! [NOM Blog, 2/24/11]


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