House GOP Nears Cap for Legal Defense of DOMA
House Republicans are close to reaching their self-imposed cap on legal defense funds for the Defense of Marriage Act, drawing calls from Democrats to end the campaign.
As of mid-August, the House was about $50,000 shy of its $1.5 million contract with Bancroft, according to numbers compiled by House Democrats, and with several court cases still undecided, House Republicans will have to choose whether to spend more money or drop the defense of the law.
The office of Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) referred questions to Bancroft’s Paul Clement and the House Administration Committee, neither of which returned multiple requests for comment.
Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (Calif.) and other Democrats released statements today calling on Republicans to drop the defense of the law and saying Boehner is on the “wrong side of history.”
“It is time for the Speaker and Congressional Republicans to drop their frivolous, taxpayer-funded lawsuits without any delay,” Pelosi said in a statement. “When they do, we will all look forward to the day when DOMA is relegated to the dustbin of history once and for all.”
House Republicans began paying for the legal defense of DOMA when President Barack Obama’s Justice Department announced it would no longer do so. Signed into law by President Bill Clinton, the mandate holds that states do not have to recognize same-sex marriages performed in other states.
Republicans have intervened in 14 cases so far and have lost five. The rest are still outstanding.
The contract has already been increased once. Last year, the original $500,000 contract was upped to $1.5 million.