Lawrence O'Donnell has taken Newt Gingrich and Glenn Beck to task over their attacks of President Obama's declination to defend the constitutionality of the Defense of Marriage Act.
In response to Gingrich and Beck's claims that the president is refusing to enforce DOMA, O'Donnell explained the difference between enforcing the law and defending its constitutionality. Says O'Donnell:
"Beck and Gingrich say the president isn't going to enforce the law. Not gonna enforce it. Now, these two constitutional scholars, who forgot to go to law school, are very, very wrong. The Obama administration has said very specifically that they will continue to enforce the law.
"The announcement from the Justice Department is very clear on speaking only to the part of the law at issue here, section 3, stating '...the department will not defend the constitutionality of section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act as applied to same-sex married couples... Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act will continue to remain in effect unless Congress repeals it or there is a final judicial finding that strikes it down, and... the executive branch will continue to enforce the law.'
"So the law will be enforced until the courts or Congress take it off the books. But the Justice Department will no longer argue its constitutionality in appeals courts, something that the Justice Department has chosen to do many times in the past."
O'Donnell also took aim at Beck's comment that the president isn't a "friend of marriage," opining that Beck and Gingrich might in fact be bigger friends of the institution since they have been married two and three times, respectively, while Obama has only been married once.