President Barack Obama's decision to no
longer defend the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) dominated LGBT law
In a look at the year that was in legal
challenges against anti-gay legislation, gay weekly Metro
Weekly's Chris Geidner wrote that the decision “altered the
The year began with LGBT legal
commentators eagerly waiting for a federal appellate court ruling on
the constitutionality of Proposition 8, California's 2008
voter-approved gay marriage ban. But 12 months later, legal sidebars
have pushed the decision into early 2012.
Instead, Obama's DOMA decision became
the big story in 2011.
The decision affected the multiple
ongoing legal challenges to the 1996 law – perhaps
spurred new lawsuits – led House Speaker John Boehner to take
on the law's defense (at
an expense of up to $1.5 million), acted as a support for an
effort to repeal the law, and even gave weight to the notion that
Obama personally endorses marriage equality.
Savage predicts “evolutionary leap” on gay marriage for Obama.)