White House Scrubs Plans to Repeal DOMA

By Susan Brinkmann, OCDS
Staff Writer

For unknown reasons, the White House has purged its website of any mention of the president’s campaign promise to repeal the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), and filed a Supreme Court brief yesterday where they defended DOMA as being a valid exercise of Congress’ power.

According to several reports appearing in Denver’s Examiner.com, the White House web site originally said President Obama “believes we need to repeal the Defense of Marriage Act and enact legislation that would ensure that the 1,100+ federal legal rights and benefits currently provided on the basis of marital status are extended to same-sex couples in civil unions and other legally-recognized unions.”

This statement has been removed from the site, which now says: “President Obama also continues to support the Employment Non-Discrimination Act and believes that our anti-discrimination employment laws should be expanded to include sexual orientation and gender identity. He supports full civil unions and federal rights for LGBT couples and opposes a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage.”

While this change has never been publicly explained, the Administration’s new position was confirmed in a brief filed yesterday in which Obama’s lawyers defended DOMA in Smelt v. United States, a lawsuit involving a married same-sex couple in California who are asking the federal government to treat them equally with respect to federal protections and benefits.

Apparently, the Obama administration used many of the same legal arguments that the Bush administration used in backing away from the repeal of DOMA, namely that the law is a valid exercise of Congress’s power, and is consistent with Equal Protection or Due Process principles, and does not impinge upon rights that are recognized as fundamental.
Coupled with Obama’s recent flip-flop on his promise to enact FOCA (Freedom of Choice Act), which would raise a woman’s right to an abortion to the level of a human right, many pro-life enthusiasts are wondering what is really going on.

“Hopefully Obama sees that there is little support in Congress for neither FOCA or the abolition of DOMA,” said the Examiner’s Jake Jones.

“This is not the first promise that he has backed away from since he became President,” he added, ”and that’s good for Christian conservatives who hold strong family values. “

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