Roll Call is reporting that Speaker John Boehner is convening a meeting of the five-member Bipartisan Legal Advisory Group (BLAG). That means Boehner, Majority Leader Eric Cantor and Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy will instruct the House Counsel to defend DOMA. Nancy Pelosi and Steny Hoyer will be outvoted. So, the U.S. House is going to court to defend an unconstitutional law that discriminates against LGBT Americans. That’s so 2004 — and a sure loser.
Expecting that news, GLAD’s Mary Bonauto made it clear she isn’t intimidated at all. She has a message for Boehner — “We are ready”:
With leadership in the U.S. House last week signaling their strong support for defending DOMA, which is currently being challenged in two lawsuits by Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders (GLAD), GLAD is fully prepared to continue making the case that legally married same-sex couples should be treated as such by the federal government.
“It is now perfectly clear that U.S. House leaders plan to intervene in the pending cases,” said Mary L. Bonauto, co-lead attorney in GLAD’s two cases Gill et al. v. Office of Personnel Management, and Pedersen et al. v. Office of Personnel Management. “We are ready to address any defense of DOMA’s double standard for how the federal government deals with legally married couples,” she added.
On this one, I’d bet on Bonauto over Boehner.
It’s ridiculous that the Speaker is even defending DOMA. But, he’s a blatant homophobe like so many in his caucus and his party. The extreme, gay-hating base of the GOP demands it. But, the politics of gay-bashing have changed dramatically over the past few years. Christ, even Rick Santorum has kinda, almost clued in a bit.
Winning in the courts on DOMA is going to be even sweeter knowing that Boehner and the House Republicans are defending it.