Obama directs Cabinet to implement marriage ruling
President Obama speaks with Edie Windsor, who challenged the federal Defense of Marriage Act, from Air Force One on Wednesday.
June 26th, 2013
12:51 PM ET
1 year ago

Obama directs Cabinet to implement marriage ruling

(CNN) – The Supreme Court ruling Wednesday that gutted the federal ban on same sex marriage elicited strongly divided responses from political leaders and advocates, a reflection of the broad disagreements that remain on the issue despite its growing acceptance among Americans.

President Barack Obama, who announced a year ago he supported same-sex marriage, said in a statement he was asking members of his administration to review "all relevant federal statutes" to ensure the Wednesday's decision is implemented "swiftly and smoothly." But conservatives vowed to continue their efforts to ban gays and lesbians from marrying, casting the rulings as a setback - but not an end - to their fight.

In Obama's statement, released as he was flying to Senegal aboard Air Force One, the president wrote the ruling striking down the Defense of Marriage Act was a "victory for couples who have long fought for equal treatment under the law."

"The laws of our land are catching up to the fundamental truth that millions of Americans hold in our hearts: when all Americans are treated as equal, no matter who they are or whom they love, we are all more free," wrote Obama, who earlier telephoned the plaintiffs who successfully fought to overturn California's Proposition 8.

In a conservation that aired live on MSNBC, Obama told Kris Perry and Sandy Stier, "We're proud of you guys."

"With your courage you're helping out a whole lot of people," Obama said.

California's governor Jerry Brown said Wednesday he was taking action in implementing the court's decision on Prop. 8, writing in a statement, "I have directed the California Department of Public Health to advise the state's counties that they must begin issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples in California as soon as the Ninth Circuit confirms the stay is lifted."

Conservatives opposing same sex marriage rights also vowed action Wednesday following the high court's rulings. Tony Perkins, the president of the Family Research Council, said efforts to prohibit marriage for gays and lesbians was "far from over.

"Time is not on the side of those who want to redefine marriage," Perkins said on CNN. "If it were, I don't think they would have gone to the court trying to impose same-sex marriage on the entire nation."

"I don't think this is over by any stretch of the imagination," Perkins continued. "And I don't think time is on the side of those who want to redefine marriage."

House Speaker John Boehner, who directed the Bipartisan Legal Advisory Group to defend DOMA, said Wednesday he was "disappointed" in the ruling but also said the battle was not yet over.

"A robust national debate over marriage will continue in the public square, and it is my hope that states will define marriage as the union between one man and one woman," Boehner said.

soundoff (26 Responses)
  1. California

    Next on the agenda, POLYGAMY

    Don't be hating and showing bigotry.

    June 26, 2013 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  2. rs

    "But conservatives vowed to continue their efforts to ban gays and lesbians from marrying, casting the rulings as a setback – but not an end – to their fight."
    _________________________
    Do keep digging that ditch, it not only defines the problem with the GOP, but gives us a nice place to bury the poor elephant.

    June 26, 2013 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  3. Rudy NYC

    from the article:

    "Time is not on the side of those who want to redefine marriage," Perkins said on CNN. "If it were, I don't think they would have gone to the court trying to impose same-sex marriage on the entire nation."
    -------------–
    Yet, it's okay for a Republican to go to court, to impose his religious based definition of marriage on an entire nation. The right wing is so wrong on this issue that it is amazing. When are they going to realize that they are fighting for exactly what they claim to always be fighting against, namely BIG GOVERNMENT.

    They want DOMA to run rough shod all over their supposedly precious states' rights. They're fighting for government takeover of the marriage process. You just can't make this stuff up.

    June 26, 2013 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  4. rs

    California

    Next on the agenda, POLYGAMY

    Don't be hating and showing bigotry.
    _______________________
    That's your line everywhere today, eh? Glad you came clean on your lifestyle.

    June 26, 2013 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  5. Sniffit

    "Do keep digging that ditch, it not only defines the problem with the GOP, but gives us a nice place to bury the poor elephant."

    Well, given the GOP/Teatroll penchant for tinfoil hated conspiracy theories, I was honestly thinking it should probably be buried in a the strawberry patch it loved to hide in.

    June 26, 2013 01:26 pm at 1:26 pm |
  6. Sniffit

    "Conservatives opposing same sex marriage rights also vowed action "

    All just sound and fury, signifying nothing. Howl at that moon, boys. Howl until you're blue in the face.

    June 26, 2013 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
  7. Sniffit

    ""Time is not on the side of those who want to redefine marriage,""

    Bwahahahaha. Up is down! Left is right! Black is white! Mittens by a landslide!

    June 26, 2013 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  8. Wilson

    Who is John Gault?

    June 26, 2013 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  9. Rudy NYC

    "I don't think this is over by any stretch of the imagination," Perkins continued. "And I don't think time is on the side of those who want to redefine marriage."
    ------------------–
    The hypocrisy coming out of the right wing is truly amazing. Do they truly believe in the US Constitution or not. The 1st Amendment defines freedom OF religion for the people, and freedom FROM religion for the government.

    Until the right wing can make a clear argument that's not based on religious theories and theocratic dogma, they need to sit down and rethink their arguments.. Their arguments do not stand up in a court of law. Unfortunately, the court of public opinion has many dissenters. Too many people do not understand the laws and how they're applied. The right wing knows it and takes advantage of it.

    June 26, 2013 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  10. California

    Glad to see liberals in favor of polygamy or are you going to hate and be bigots?

    June 26, 2013 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  11. rs

    Wilson

    Who is John Gault?
    __________________
    A character in a poorly written Russian's novel, revered by many in the TEA Party ranks.

    June 26, 2013 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  12. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    @ rs
    Thanks for the "printable" assist with PSI. The moderators evidently deemed mine inappropriate hwoever truthful!
    Our one-trick-pony friend, PSI, does inded appear to have been unhinged by today's ruling compounded with just plain, sick, hatred of our POTUS and his family.
    Too bad.
    Keep up your great posts. You're on FIRE today!!!

    June 26, 2013 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  13. Hammerer

    Why did the gays on the court not recluse themselves?

    June 26, 2013 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  14. Peoples State of Illinois

    just think, since we now have two definitions of marriage, the new civil marriage and the old traditional marriage, the best advice to single people is to find someone with whom you can enter civil marrriage and milk the taxpayers for every cent you can.

    now, the only requirements for obtaining government civil marriage benefits is that you file paperwork with the government. there is no element of love, procreation, respect or even fraternization required. you do not even have to live together. are you a single person plannning to retire from federal service, find some poor dude whose future prospects are dim and enter a civil marriage so that he can continue to milk the feds and taxpayers long after your death. heck, you do not even have to contract the civil marrriage until your death is imminent.

    also, since civil marriage has nothing to do with the sacrament of matrimony, there is nothing sinful about contracting a civil marriage. civil marriage is simply a government mechanism for raping taxpayers. it would be foolish not to take advantage of the law as it is now interpreted.

    June 26, 2013 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  15. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA -aka- Take Back The House -aka- No Redemption Votes

    California
    Next on the agenda, POLYGAMY

    Don't be hating and showing bigotry.
    ---------------------------------------------
    Now are you referring to minor girls or brainwashed girls? I guess rape is okay in your judgement as well.

    June 26, 2013 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
  16. Sniffit

    "Until the right wing can make a clear argument that's not based on religious theories and theocratic dogma, they need to sit down and rethink their arguments"

    They tried that...and because all the science and studies and experts agree that gay marriage itself or having gay parents does not result in whacked out children and a whole host of other nonsense in the GOP/Teatroll religio-fascist demagoguery parade of horribles, that approach hasn't worked for them either.

    June 26, 2013 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  17. The Real Tom Paine

    Wilson

    Who is John Gault?
    ************************
    Since Ayn Rand was an atheist, cheering this decision.

    June 26, 2013 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  18. Peoples State of Illinois

    I see some on the left still hate and disregard facts, when the facts make their messiah look bad.

    June 26, 2013 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  19. Rudy NYC

    California

    Glad to see liberals in favor of polygamy or are you going to hate and be bigots?
    ---------------–
    Bait and switch. You're the only one talking about polygamy. it's still illegal. The DOMA decision affects only civil unions, not those performed by private religious institutions. They can ban anything they want...inside of their own walls.

    June 26, 2013 01:53 pm at 1:53 pm |
  20. Sniffit

    "the best advice to single people is to find someone with whom you can enter civil marrriage and milk the taxpayers for every cent you can."

    Wow that's stupid. Why would gender have anything to do with it? People of opposite gender already could be doing that anyway. Your comment is absurd.

    "there is no element of love, procreation, respect or even fraternization required."

    There never was. Opposite gendered people could be "milking the system" as we speak all across the country, just because they happen to be friends, haven't found someone to marry who they love etc., and want some tax deductions and other bennies.

    June 26, 2013 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  21. Sniffit

    "Why did the gays on the court not recluse themselves?"

    Same reason the straights didn't. That question is absolute nonsense. You think the straight justices don't have a "personal interest" in maintaining laws that create measurable financial and other advantages for straight couples over gay couples? Advantages that make it easier for straight couples to save for their retirements, afford a home, raise their families and compete against gay couples? Grow up.

    June 26, 2013 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
  22. John in Brooklyn

    Despite what California (the guy posting, not the state) doesn't get is that the Supreme Court REFUSED to actually attempt to define what is or is not a legal marriage. They simply ruled that states have a right to define marriages and that the federal government has the obligation to recognize them. Further, in the case of prop 8, again, they did not rule on the definition of marriage, only that the private group of people defending the upholding of prop 8 was not a legitimate plaintiff. So, California, it did not open the door for legitimizing polygamy, beastiality, or any other boogie man that conservatives have been trying to scare people into believing.
    Further, as another post pointed out, it ALSO opens the door for same sex marriage to become the national norm since the Full Faith and Credit clause of the Constitution has traditionally been interpreted as requiring states to recognize other states' marriages for citizens who move from state to state. So, it is reasonable to assume that the next major case that they'll have to address is one in which a same-sex married couple moves to a state that does not recognize same-sex marriage. SCOTUS – even the conservative members – are not likely to reverse 200 years of full faith cases to rule that a couple married in New York is not married in Alabama.

    June 26, 2013 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  23. SuperD

    This is nothing more than more culture rot for America. Gays, regardless who they think they are, are not special and not deserving of anything, including marriage.

    Come on and cheer the culture rot! America is in decline, and do note that the women from Texas filibustered and allowed us to continue to kill innocent babies.....Aint that great Leftys??

    Rejoice you godless Liberals!! You can kill more babies!! Gays can marry!!!

    June 26, 2013 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  24. Bob

    Looks like its time to play a couple of games:
    "Cowboys and illegal aliens," and "Cowboys and gays."

    June 26, 2013 02:12 pm at 2:12 pm |
  25. Shontal

    It's a victory for LBGT but Obama hasn't come out as strongly to reduce our ranking as a police state. Highest incarceration rate in the world. High unemployment and an horrible representative for Black men in the country. He fights for women, gays and Hollywood. That's it!!!

    June 26, 2013 02:15 pm at 2:15 pm |
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