Socarides: ‘the bottom line is the government continues to oppose full equality for its gay citizens’

As John reported last night, the Obama administration is still defending DOMA in the courts. The President and his Department of Justice don’t have to do it, but they are. And, that’s just wrong. I don’t think this counts as “evolving.”

From Ben Smith:

Gay groups are furious with a Justice Department brief defending — though in quite narrow terms — the Defense of Marriage Act, which Candidate Obama, unlike even his Democratic rivals, had pledged to repeal in full.

“DOMA is supported by rationales that constitute a sufficient rational basis for the law. For example, as explained below, it is supported by an interest in maintaining the status quo and uniformity on the federal level, and preserving room for the development of policy in the states,” says the government’s brief (.pdf) in two cases in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit. The brief focuses solely on the virtues of keeping the federal law while state’s experiment, and not the underlying question of marriage.

The half-heartedness of that defense didn’t offer much solace to activists who — despite the Justice Department’s traditional role defending federal laws — are demanding that Obama return to the full support for same-sex marriage that he advocated in the 1990s.

“There are some improvements in tone in the brief, but the bottom line is the government continues to oppose full equality for its gay citizens,” said Equality Matters chief Richard Socarides in an email. “And that is unacceptable.”

Completely unacceptable. And, this is going to be a problem for the reelection campaign. Soon-to-be Campaign Manager Jim Messina is going to have to figure this one out. The President is going to have to be clear about his full support for marriage equality.




AMERICAblog Gay

—  admin

SHOCKING: Bigoted Hate-Filled Anti-Gay Christian Pastors Oppose Repeal Of DADT

Joe. My. God.

—  admin

Leading NH GOP Senate candidates oppose gay adoption

On Wednesday, September 15th, from 6 – 7 PM, AMERICAblog and several other LGBT blogs and bloggers will be hosting a live chat with the Democratic candidate for Senate from NH, Paul Hodes. He is a strong supporter of marriage equality — and we need more marriage supporters in the Senate. Hodes currently the Congressman from the NH’s Second District. The guy is a real progressive.

Tomorrow is primary day in New Hampshire. GOP voters in New Hampshire will pick their nominee to run against Hodes. There’s not much of a choice. According to the latest poll, from Magellan Strategies, long-time frontrunner Kelly Ayotte is leading Ovide Lamontagne: 35% – 31%. That’s within the margin of error. According to the pollster, Lamontagne has picked up 10 points in since September 1. Ayotte and Lamontagne not only opposes marriage equality (in a state where marriage is legal), they both oppose gay adoption. That’s pretty extreme:

Pretty clear we’d lose ground if Ayotte or Lamontagne wins.

Join us on Wednesday. We’ll know by then who Hodes will be facing in November. But, it’s pretty clear that it’s going to be a very stark choice: Equality vs. Homophobia.




AMERICAblog Gay

—  John Wright

Poll: Nevadans Oppose Marriage Equality

A majority of people in Nevada oppose extending marriage rights to same-sex couples, according to the results of a statewide poll released Saturday. 
Daily News

—  John Wright