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Tobias Wolff on DOMA Rulings, Obama

Tobias Wolff on DOMA Rulings, Obama


University of Pennsylvania law professor Tobias Wolff, who advised the Obama presidential campaign on LGBT issues, appeared on The Rachel Maddow Show to discuss next steps in the federal court rulings that struck down a critical part of the Defense of the Marriage Act. Wolff said it was very likely the Obama administration would appeal the rulings.

Host Chris Hayes, who substituted for Maddow, asked Wolff about the awkward position created for President Obama because of the two rulings Thursday from Judge Joseph Tauro of the U.S. district court in Boston. The president has said he wants to see DOMA repealed, but his administration has continued to defend the discriminatory statute.

"It's going to be difficult for them not to appeal," said Wolff. "This administration frankly has been put in a rotten position with respect to this statute."

On the other hand, Wolff said, "The more judicial decisions that we get like today's, which help to establish in the courts the principle that antigay discrimination and discrimination against relationships of gay couples is unconstitutional and impermissible, the more ammunition it will give the justice department to perhaps take a second look at that question."

The next stop for the cases would be the first circuit court of appeals in Boston.

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