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Boehner Launches DOMA Defense To The Delight Of Anti-Gay Hate Groups

April 20, 2011 11:16 am ET by Carlos Maza

House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) took major steps this week toward defending the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) in an upcoming federal court case. On Monday, Boehner sent a letter to House Minority leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) expressing his desire to deduct the cost of the House’s defense of DOMA from the Justice Department’s budget.

Later that day, it was announced that Paul Clement, former Solicitor General of the U.S. and talented litigator, would be overseeing DOMA’s defense in court, for a price over at least $500 dollars an hour. Clement moved quickly to file a motion requesting that the House Bipartisan Legal Advisory Group be allowed to intervene in Windsor v. United States, a case currently challenging DOMA’s Section 3 in federal court.

Boehner’s strong moves to defend a law that denies loving, committed gay and lesbian couples and their families thousands of federal benefits have not gone unnoticed. In fact, Boehner must really be feeling the love, considering the support he’s been getting from some of the country’s most vicious anti-gay hate groups:

Family Research Council President Tony Perkins:

On the heels of the news that Congress will add another DOMA challenge suit to their caseload, this time a challenge in New York State, House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) today sent a letter to Pelosi regarding the House's intent to protect taxpayers. The Speaker's solution is both simple and effective.

[…]

We've seen no reply from the newly fiscally aware Rep. Pelosi. I applaud the Speaker for taking the right steps to defend the laws of this nation. [Family Research Council, 4/18/11]

Focus On The Family’s CitizenLink judicial analyst Bruce Hausknecht:

Ladies and gentlemen, it just doesn’t get any better on a Monday than to hear that the House of Representatives has selected Paul Clement as its outside counsel to take on the defense of DOMA after the President and the Department of Justice’s rather spectacular failure to do so.

[…]

I’m breathing just a little bit easier today. This is really great news. [CitizenLink, 4/18/11]

Alliance Defense Fund Senior Counsel Brian Raum:

The American people deserve to have their laws defended. The House is demonstrating that it will not let a law that it overwhelmingly passed, that President Clinton signed, and that the American people support go undefended. ADF believes the House made an excellent decision by choosing former Solicitor General Paul Clement as lead counsel to defend DOMA, and we will support his efforts in whatever way we can. [Alliance Defense Fund, 4/18/11]

Traditional Values Coalition Action Alert:

Congress relies upon the Department of Justice to defend the constitutionality of our laws and appropriates taxpayer dollars for this purpose.  Since the Obama Administration refuses to uphold the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), Speaker Boehner has asked Nancy Pelosi to join him in redirecting those resources to the U.S. House of Representatives.

Will Nancy take the Speaker up on his offer to protect the American taxpayer and defend DOMA?

Take a quick moment and urge your member of Congress to support Speaker John Boehner, and urge Nancy Pelosi to put action behind her words to defend marriage.  [Traditional Values Coalition, 4/19/11]

These groups are hardly strange bedfellows with the GOP; House Republicans have been courting votes from social conservatives for months now, and are unlikely to change course anytime soon. With yet another poll revealing that a majority of Americans now support marriage equality, it’s becoming clear that the GOP would rather pal around with anti-gay extremists than uphold the will of the people.

Previously:

Top Five Moments From The House’s “Defending Marriage” Hearing

Beck Can't Understand Why People Think Republicans Are Anti-Gay

Republicans Sticking To Their Anti-LGBT Guns For 2012