In a move obviously meant as a middle-finger to the president’s historic announcement, last night the GOP-dominated U.S. House “reaffirmed” the Defense Of Marriage Act. The new amendment, which was attached to a funding bill, commands that the Obama administration may take no action in violation of DOMA, something the White House has not done.
Via Chris Johnson at Washington Blade:
In a 245-171 vote, House lawmakers approved the amendment, introduced by freshman Rep. Tim Huelskamp (R-Kansas), as part of Commerce-Justice-Science appropriations legislation. The amendment reads, “None of the funds made available under this Act, may be used in contravention of the Defense of Marriage Act.” Ian Thompson, legislative representative for the American Civil Liberties Union, said the amendment in effect does nothing because although the Justice Department is no longer defending DOMA in court, the Obama administration is still enforcing it. “The Huelskamp Amendment is a solution in search of a problem,” Thompson said. “While there are multiple legal challenges to DOMA working their way through the federal courts, it is still binding. This amendment serves absolutely no purpose other than to score political points at the expense of gay and lesbian couples.”
Seven Republicans opposed the bill including Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (FL) and Rep. Mary Bono Mack (CA). Sixteen Democrats approved the bill.