(CNN) — A federal appeals court on Monday affirmed a previous injunction of Arizona’s controversial immigration law, another setback for legislation that has drawn sharp opposition from President Barack Obama’s administration.
In its ruling, a three-judge panel on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit sided with the U.S. Justice Department and against Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer, who signed the measure known as SB 1070 into law last year.
The U.S. government will no longer automatically deny applications for immigration benefits for same-sex couples, opting to put them on hold until it gets some legal advice on the Obama administration’s decision to stop defending the law that prohibits gay marriage
The decision to put off deciding the fate of applications for immigration benefits from gays and lesbians married to U.S. citizens is not a change in policy, said Chris Bentley, a spokesman for U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.
Until USCIS announced the temporary change, applications for immigration benefits for foreign nationals married to a U.S. citizen of the same gender were automatically denied because the Defense of Marriage Act defines marriage as only between a man and a woman.
In February, Attorney General Eric Holder announced that the Justice Department would no longer defend the constitutionality of the law. Now, USCIS is awaiting legal direction from the Department of Homeland Security on how to handle applications for benefits from gay couples.
What a tool.
President Obama believes that the Defense of Marriage Act is unconstitutional and will no longer defend the 15-year-old law in federal court, the Justice Department announced today.
The decision, which stunned and delighted gay rights activists, means that the administration will withdraw its defense of ongoing suits in two federal appeals circuits and will leave it to Congress to defend the law against those challenges. It will remain a party to the lawsuits. The law itself remains in effect.
DOMA, signed by President Clinton in 1995, allows states not to recognize same-sex marriages preformed in other states and provides a federal definition for “marriage” that exempts same-sex couples. (more)
Passage of a gay protections bill and repeal of the federal ban on gay marriage are “priorities” for President Obama, White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs told reporters last week.
“We talked about DOMA a few days ago, ENDA, and other things that are important to build off the progress of repealing ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,’” Gibbs said in response to a question from a Washington Blade reporter. “I think those continue to be priorities of the president’s and we will certainly work to make progress on those fronts in obviously a much more challenging Congress over the course of the next two years.”
Washington (CNN) — An anti-abortion activist plans to announce Thursday that he will challenge President Barack Obama in the Democratic primary next year.
Randall Terry, who founded Operation Rescue, has scheduled a news conference for 11 a.m. ET at the nation’s capital.
"My constituency is the millions of pro-life advocates who want to make child killing illegal from conception until birth," he said in a statement.
"My base is those who know that we must show Americans the victims of abortion, in order to restore the full protection of law to unborn babies."
Terry has also denounced homosexuality, infidelity, birth control, divorce and unwed mothers.
Wait, so you’re a Republican…
I received a message from AlexanderClarence asking me what Obama could have done in the last two years to satisfy the crowd that formed his base (both the progressives and the moderates that didn’t often vote for Democrats). I can think of three major things that Obama could have done, but didn’t:
- Obama should have pushed harder for a Public option in his healthcare bill. He’s vilified for “Obamacare” by partisans anyway, so putting a system in place that delivers real and tangible savings, gives coverage to the fifty million Americans without it, and makes the public pay for preventative instead of emergency health care for it’s citizens (emergency care costs more and is less effective, but it’s what people without insurance get). Instead, Obama gave up on a Public Option as early as July 2009.
- Obama should have been much, much harder on Wallstreet. Again, the right-wing media machine is going to call him a job killing capitalist hater no matter the circumstances, so refusing to bail out companies that gave massive bonuses to incompetent executives while outsourcing or downsizing the majority of their labor. He appointed Bill Daley to be his chief of staff, Tim Geithner to be the president of the Fed, and Mary Shapiro as his investor advocate at the SEC, all very corporatist selections.
- The escalation of the war on terror has been disastrous morally, economically, and to our image abroad and foreign standing. We’re ordering the assassination of US citizens without due process, exploding weddings and church gatherings with CIA drones that rarely manage to accomplish their objectives (and, as it turns out, are rarely targeted based on solid evidence), and searching/seizing the property of people who agree with our political enemies (again without due process). The war costs massive amounts of money, paid to war profiteers who are already immensely wealthy with funds borrowed from other nations that they plan to pay back by cutting services to the poor (‘austerity’ measures they will call it, while spending more than most nation’s GDP on unnecessary wars). Our foreign policy has even our allies thinking we’ll torture political prisoners as a punitive measure, not to mention how it looks to the many members of the UN/NATO who are already somewhat wary of US military force. Obama could easily choose not to escalate the drone strikes, pull back on intimidation, reinstate due process and cut defense costs.
These things each wore at a separate part of the electorate that supported him and culminate in disappointment by the voting public.
Today, the Department of Justice filed a notice of appeal in the case of Gill v. Office of Personnel Management, the challenge brought by Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders (GLAD) to Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act…
As expected, the whitehouse files a last minute appeal to fiercely advocate for opposite-sex marriage.
AMERICAblog Gay: “‘Legal experts’ tell AP: Obama does not have to appeal DADT ruling.” Way to be a “fierce advocate,” Mr. President! — Ryking