Florida Senator Marco Rubio has called
President Barack Obama's decision to no longer defend the Defense of
Marriage Act (DOMA) “regrettable.”
The president recently announced his
administration would no longer defend the law because he believes
parts of it are unconstitutional. The 1996 law ban federal agencies
from recognizing the legal marriages of gay and lesbian couples and
allows states to ignore such marriages from out of state.
On Friday, House
Majority Leader John Boehner announced the creation of a five-member
panel to consider whether to instruct the House's nonpartisan Office
of the General Counsel to defend the law.
The Republican-controlled panel is
expected to defend the law in court.
Rubio, a Tea Party favorite, cheered
“I want to thank Speaker Boehner and
the House Republican leadership for taking action to defend this
critical law that was enacted by a bipartisan majority in Congress
and signed by President Bill Clinton,” the
39-year-old Republican said in a statement.
“It is unfortunate that President
Obama decided to no longer defend the Defense of Marriage Act. While
much of the debate in Washington is focused on creating jobs and
growing our economy, we should not sit by while this administration
makes profound and regrettable decisions based more upon the politics
of the day than the words of our Founding Fathers. This law protects
one of our most sacred institutions and because of the House’s
actions today, it will be defended.”
GOP group Log Cabin Republicans also cheered Boehner's move. But
six House Democrats, including its four openly gay members, on Friday
released a statement in support of the president's decision.