House Speaker John Boehner on Wednesday
criticized President Barack Obama for not defending the Defense of
Marriage Act (DOMA) in court.
A case challenging the
constitutionality of DOMA, the 1996 law which prevents the federal
government from recognizing the legal marriages of gay and lesbian
couples, has reached the Supreme Court, which will hear oral
arguments in the case next week.
A Boehner-appointed and -led committee
instructed House council to defend the law in court after the Obama
administration decided it would no longer defend a law it considers
to be unconstitutional. The House is defending DOMA in at least 12
At a press conference on Wednesday,
Boehner was asked about the House's involvement in the case.
“In our system of government, the
administration doesn't get to decide what's constitutional. The
Supreme Court does,” explained Boehner, a Republican from Ohio.
“Our financing the lawsuit was to make sure that the proper forum
was used to make sure that we know what's constitutional and what
Boehner also reiterated his opposition
to marriage equality.
“Listen, this is a very divisive
issue. And people on both sides of this question have serious
positions and I respect everyone's opinion. I just gave my opinion.
My opinion born out of my childhood, my faith, my beliefs that
marriage is between one man and one woman. I respect other people's
views.” (The video is embedded on this page. Visit
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