First reactions to Obama's decision to stop defending DOMA


NOM's response to this decision is now posted here.

Here is a quick survey of some top conservative pundits with their reaction to today's news about DOMA.

William C. Duncan writes, "Obama Tells DOJ to Take a Dive in DOMA Cases":

There is something about the marriage issue that provokes an “any means necessary” approach from its proponents (among whom I believe we can count the president, notwithstanding campaign rhetoric to the contrary).

Dan Foster adds:

● The DOJ (and the president) are attempting to unilaterally amend the Constitution to add a sexual-orientation discrimination clause.

● Over the last decade, most of the courts that have weighed in on the issue have found marriage laws to be consistent with the federal Constitution or the relevant state constitution, but the DOJ does not even mention these decisions.

● If the “equal protection component” of the 5th Amendment means that Congress can’t define marriage as the union of a man and a woman, how could the states do so under the equal protection clause of the 14th Amendment?

● Can the letter’s assertion that gay and lesbian activists lack political power really be take seriously, given this very decision, the repeal of DADT, etc.?

Andrew McCarthy:

One of the most insidious practices of the insidious Obama Justice Department the sabotaging of litigation — i.e., DOJ purports to defend some statute or government policy so that it can appear to be moderate, but uses its resulting control over how the case gets litigated to forfeit some of the best legal arguments supporting the statute/policy. This way, DOJ can steer the case toward the radical outcome the Obama base desires rather than the outcome DOJ is ostensibly pursuing.

Shannen Coffin:

While the DOJ was nominally defending the statute [up to today], it was, as a result of political interference, already taking a dive. It was the sort of thing that a Republican administration would have been excoriated for. Today’s announcement at least has the advantage of admitting what was already the case.

Our own Maggie Gallagher has a few initial thoughts here.