Social Question

Judi's avatar

Who is defending DOMA to the Supreme Court?

Asked by Judi (40025points) March 25th, 2013

Since its federal law wouldn’t it have to be an Obama appointee? Do they have a responsibility to vigorously defend it even if they oppose it?
What about Prop 8? I don’t think a Jerry Brown appointee would have an interest in defending it.
As bonus questions, what do you 1. Think the outcome will be and 2. Hope the outcome will be?

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10 Answers

rojo's avatar

Interestingly, it is the Congress of the US that has hired the atty on the DOMA case Article No.1 and Boehner specifically Article No.2 that has brought the challenge to the court.
Bonus 1 – I think the court will uphold DOMA in a 5 to 4 split thus ensuring it will come up again some day.
Bonus 2 – I hope the court will strike down DOMA thus putting this travesty of a law behind us.

rojo's avatar

It will be interesting to see how this actually turns out since both cases are being held up as states rights cases: Prop 8 allowing the States to legislate discrimination and the DOMA one the Feds saying the States do not have a right to override a federal law allowing discrimination.

JLeslie's avatar

I have been reading up about DOMA. I think the court will strike down DOMA. I hope so. It’s already weird that when we heterosexual people move from state to state our rights change in our marriages. Property rights, what happens in a divorce, etc. It’s so odd for a couple, heterosexual or homosexual to live as a legally married couple, and then if a job opportunity comes up or they move to be near an elderly parent they lose their marital status and lose all rights of survivorship to each other? It’s so illogical. But, as I said, it already is a little odd for hetero couples so who knows.

I do think if it is upheld, still gay couples that are married legally should get the benefit of whatever federal allows apply to married people. Like estate taxes, things like that. Does DOMA cover that?

Judi's avatar

Right now DOMA denies rights like tax exempt insurance for the spouse of a gay couple, joint tax returns and tax free transfer of property when a spouse dies. It IS extremely discriminatory.

CWOTUS's avatar

Technically, this should be a Tenth Amendment issue and the law should be struck down immedately as a clear violation of the Tenth Amendment, which states in full:

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

But no one in the Federal government – including the Supreme Court – wants to awaken citizens to the presence of the Ninth and Tenth Amendments, or we’d dismantle more than half the government – justifiably and belatedly – on those grounds. So I doubt very much whether anyone will sue on those grounds. The Ninth and Tenth Amendments are pretty much dead letters in the Bill of Rights, and have been for most of the past hundred years or so.

It should be obvious how I hope this will play out.

bkcunningham's avatar

What is comes down to the reach of the Executive Branch of our government.

You want to know the attorneys involved? It isn’t as you suggest defense attorneys and prosecutors. Here is a list of the attorneys involved (Sorry for the way it came out when I paste. I just wanted you to have an idea of the complexity of the case):

~~Name~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~Address~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ~~Phone~~~
Attorneys for Petitioner:
Donald B. Verrilli Jr. Solicitor General (202) 514–2217
Counsel of Record United States Department of Justice
950 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.
Washington, DC 20530–0001
Party name: United States
Attorneys for Respondents:
Paul D. Clement Bancroft PLLC (202) 234–0090
Counsel of Record 1919 M Street, N.W., Suite 470
Washington, DC 20036
Party name: Bipartisan Legal Advisory Group of the United States House of Representatives

Roberta A. Kaplan Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP (212) 373–3000
Counsel of Record 1285 Avenue of the Americas
New York, NY 10019–6064
Party name: Edith Schlain Windsor, in Her Capacity as Executor of the Estate of Thea Clara Spyer
Helen M. Alvare George Mason University (703) 993–9845
School of Law
3301 Fairfax Dr.
Arlington, VA 22201
Party name: Helen M. Alvare

Peter T. Barbur Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP (212) 474–1000
825 Eighth Avenue
New York, NY 10019
Party name: Empire State Pride Agenda, et al.

Laurel G. Bellows American Bar Association (312) 988–5000
321 North Clark Street
Chicago, IL 60054
Party name: American Bar Association (Merits)

Nicole G. Berner 1800 Massachusetts Ave. NW (202) 730–7383
Washington, DC 20036
Party name: American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations, et al. (Merits)

Carmine D. Boccuzzi Jr. Cleary, Gottlieb, Steen & Hamilton (212) 225–2000
One Liberty Plaza
New York, NY 10006
Party name: American Sociological Association (Merits)

Elise C. Boddie NAACP Legal Defense & Educational Fund, Inc. (212) 965–2200
99 Hudson Street, 16th Floor
New York, NY 10013
Party name: NAACP Legal Defense & Educational Fund, Inc. (Merits)

David C. Boyle P.O. Box 15143 (734)-904–6132
Long Beach, CA 90815
Party name: David Boyle

Gerard V. Bradley 3156 Eck Hall of Law (574)-631–8385
Notre Dame, IN 46556
Party name: Dr. Paul McHugh (Merits)

Anita Susan Brenner 301 East Colorado Boulevard (616)-792–3175
Suite 614
Pasadena, CA 91101
Party name: Los Angeles County Bar Association, et al.

J. Robert Brown Jr. University of Denver (303)-871–6254
Sturm College of Law
Denver, CO 80208
Party name: Scholars of the Constitutional Rights of Children (Merits)

Dean Robert Broyles National Center for Law & Policy (760)-747–4529
539 West Grand Avenue
Escondido, CA 92025
Party name: Parents and Friends of Ex-Gays & Gays (Merits)

G. Eric Brunstad Jr. Dechert LLP (860) 524–3999
90 State House Square
Hartford, CT 06103
Party name: Honorable John K. Olson (Merits)

Paul C. Burke 36 South State Street, Suite 1400 (801) 532–1500
Salt Lake City, UT 84111
Party name: Utah Pride Center, et al.

Holly L. Carmichael 2635 Camino de Rio South, Suite 109 (408)-838–1212
San Diego, CA 92108
Party name: Concerned Women for America

David C. Codell The Williams Institute (310) 267–4382
UCLA School of Law
Box 951476
Los Angeles, CA 90095–1476
Party name: National Women’s Law Center, et al.

Catherine R. Connors Pierce Atwood LLP (207) 791–1100
Merrill’s Wharf
254 Commerce Street
Portland, ME 04107
Party name: Historians, American Historical Association, et al.

Walter Dellinger O’Melveny & Myers LLP (202) 383–5319
1625 Eye Street, N.W.
Washington, DC 20006
Party name: Family Law Professors, et al. (Merits)

Deborah Dewart 620 E. Sabiston Drive (910)-326–4554
Swansboro, NC 28584–9674
Party name: Liberty, Life and Law Foundation, et al. (Merits)

William C. Duncan Marriage Law Foundation (801)-367–4570
1868 N 800 E
Lehi, UT 84043
Party name: National Organization for Marriage (Merits)

W. Cole Durham Jr. J. Reuben Clark Law School (801) 422–6842
452 JRCB
Provo, UT 84602
Party name: international jurists and academics (merits)

John C. Eastman Center for Constitutional Jurisprudence (714) 628–2587
c/o Chapman University School of Law
One University Drive
Orange, CA 92886
Party name: Center for Constitutional Jurisprudence (Jurisdiction)

John A. Eidsmoe Foundation for Moral Law (334) 262–1245
One Dexter Avenue
Montgomery, AL 36104
Party name: Foundation for Moral Law

Roy T. Englert Jr. Robbins, Russell, Englert, Orseck, Untereiner & Sauber LLP (202) 775–4500
1801 K Street, N.W., Suite 411
Washington, DC 20006
Party name: Federalism Scholars (Merits)

Peter J. Ferrara 2011 Freedom Lane (703) 582–8466
Falls Church, VA 22043
Party name: American Civil Rights Union (Merits)

Thomas M. Fisher Solicitor General (317) 232–6255
Office of the Attorney General
IGC South, Fifth Floor
302 W. Washington Street
Indianapolis, IN 46204
Party name: Indiana and 16 other states (Merits)

Steven W. Fitschen The National Legal Foundation (757)-463–6133
2224 Virginia Beach Blvd.
Suite 204
Virginia Beach, VA 23454
Party name: The Beverly LaHaye Institute, et al.

Jonathan S. Franklin Fulbright & Jaworski L.L.P. (202) 662–0466
801 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.
Washington, DC 20004–2623
Party name: Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, et al. (Merits)

Robert P. George Robinson & McElwee (609) 258–3270
500 Virginia Street
East Suite 600
Charleston, WV 25326
Party name: Robert P. George, et al. (Merits)

Douglas Hallward-Driemeier Ropes & Gray LLP (202) 508–4600
One Metro Center
700 12th Street, NW, Suite 900
Washington, DC 20005
Party name: Anti-Defamation League, et al.

Elizabeth L. Hileman Hileman & Associates, P.C. (301) 652–1448
7979 Old Georgetown Rd., Suite 600
Bethesda, MD 20814
Party name: American Humanist Association and American Atheists, Inc., et al.

Nan D. Hunter Georgetown University Law Center (202) 662–9399
600 New Jersey Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20001
Party name: Professors Nan D. Hunter, et al.

Vicki C. Jackson 1545 Massachusetts Ave. (617) 496–0555
Cambridge, MA 02138
Party name: Court-appointed amicus curiae

Lawrence J. Joseph 1250 Connecticut Ave., NW (202) 355–9452
Suite 200
Washington, DC 20036
Party name: Eagle Forum Education & Legal Defense Fund, Inc. (Merits)

Katherine Keating 560 Mission Street, 25th Floor (415)-268–2000
San Francisco, CA 94105
Party name: Family Equality Council, et al.

Von G. Keetch Kirton & McConkie (801) 328–3600
60 East South Temple
Salt Lake City, UT 84111
Party name: National Association of Evangelicals (Merits)

Douglas Laycock University of Virginia School of Law (434) 243–8546
580 Massie Road
Charlottesville, VA 22903
Party name: American Jewish Committee (Merits)

Robert Bradley Lewis 248 Richmond St (985) 735–9003
Bogalusa, LA 70427
Party name: Chaplain Alliance for Religious Liberty, et al. (Merits)

Charles S. Limandri PO Box 9120 (858) 759–9948
Rancho Santa Fe, CA 92067
Party name: Catholic Answers, et al. (Merits)

Marjorie P. Lindblom Kirkland & Ellis LLP (212) 446–4800
601 Lexington Avenue
New York, NY 10022
Party name: Gary J. Gates (Merits)

Paul Benjamin Linton Special Counsel (847) 291–3848
Thomas More Society
931 Keystone Avenue
Northbrook, IL 60062
Party name: Family Research Council

Robert A. Long Jr. Covington & Burling LLP (202) 662–5612
1201 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.
Washington, DC 20004
Party name: Political Science Professors

Christopher D. Man Chadbourne & Parke LLP (202) 974–5600
1200 New Hampshire Ave., N.W.
Washington, DC 20036
Party name: OutServe-SLDN Inc.

John W. Mauck Mauck & Baker (312) 726–1243
Suite 600
One North LaSalle Street
Chicago, IL 60602
Party name: Manhattan Declaration (Merits)

Lori Alvino McGill Latham & Watkins LLP (202)-637–2319
555 11th Street, NW
Suite 1000
Washington, DC 20004
Party name: Constitutional Law Scholars Bruce Ackerman, et al.

Robert J. McNamara 901 N Glebe Road, Suite 900 (703)-682–9320
Arlington, VA 22203
Party name: Institute for Justice (Merits)

Alan B. Morrison George Washington University Law School (202) 994–7120
2000 H Street NW
Washington, DC 20052
Party name: Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (Merits)

Sharon L. Nelles 125 Broad Street (212)-558–4000
New York, NY 10004
Party name: Family and Child Welfare Law Professors (Merits)

Miriam R. Nemetz Mayer Brown LLP (202) 263–3000
1999 K Street NW
Washington, DC 20006
Party name: 172 Members of the U.S. House of Representatives and 40 U.S. Senators

Nicholas M. O’Donnell One Post Office Square (617)-338–2814
Boston, MA 02109
Party name: GLMA: Health Professionals Advancing LBGT Equality (Gay and Lesbian Medical Association) concerning the immutability of sexual orientation (Merits)

Abram J. Pafford Pafford Lawrence & Childress PLLC (202) 756–4886
1776 I Street NW, Suite 900
Washington, DC 20006
Party name: Social Science Professors (Merits)

Margie J. Phelps 3734 SW 12th Street (785) 408–4598
Topeka, KS 66604
Party name: Westboro Baptist Church in support of neither party (Merits)

Carter G. Phillips Sidley Austin LLP (202) 736–8000
1501 K Street, N.W.
Washington, DC 20005
Party name: Hon. Lawrence J. Korb, et al.

Anthony R. Picarello Jr. 3211 Fourth Street, N.E. (202) 541–3300
Washington, DC 20017
Party name: United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (Merits)

Andrew J. Pincus Mayer Brown LLP (202) 263–3000
1999 K Street, NW
Washington, DC 20006–1101
Party name: Constitutional Law Scholars (Jurisdiction)

Trevor Potter Caplin & Drysdale, Chartered (202) 862–5092
1 Thomas Circle, N.W., Suite 1100
Washington, DC 20036
Party name: Former Federal Election Commission Officials (Merits)

Eric C. Rassbach Beket Fund for Religious Liberty (202) 349–7214
3000 K Street, NW, Suite 220
Washington, DC 20007
Party name: The Becket Fund for Religious Liberty (Merits)

Christopher S. Rhee 555 12th Street, N.W. (202)-942–5524
Washington, DC 20004
Party name: Dr. Donna E. Shalala, et al.

Sanford Jay Rosen Rosen Bien & Galvan LLP (415) 433–6830
315 Montgomery Street
10th Floor
San Francisco, CA 94104–1823
Party name: Survivors of Sexual Orientation Change Therapies

Kevin K. Russell Goldstein & Russell, P.C. (202) 362–0636
5225 Wisconsin Ave., NW, Suite 404
Washington, DC 20015
Party name: Former Senators Bill Bradley, et al.

Dovid Zechariah Schwartz 147–40 72nd Avenue (917)-680–6632
Flushing, NY 11367
Party name: Dovid Z. Schwartz

James F. Segroves 1001 Pennsylvania Ave., NW (202)-416–6871
Washington, DC 20004
Party name: Former Federal Intelligence Officer (Merits)

Jay Alan Sekulow American Center for Law & Justice (202) 546–8890
201 Maryland Ave., N.E.
Washington, DC 20002
Party name: Former Attorneys General Edwin Meese III and John Ashcroft in support of neither party (Jurisdiction) out of time

William F. Sheehan Goodwin I Procter LLP (202) 346–4000
901 New York Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20001
Party name: American Psychological Association, et al.

Paul M. Smith Jenner & Block LLP (202) 639–6000
1099 New York Avenue, N.W., Suite 900
Washington, DC 20001
Party name: Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders, et al.

Mathew D. Staver Liberty Counsel (800) 671–1776
P.O. Box 540774
Orlando, FL 327854
Party name: Liberty Counsel (Merits)

Michael L. Stern 8529 Century Oak Court (703) 186–7581
Fairfax Station, VA 20515
Party name: United States Senators Orrin Hatch, et al.

Catherine E. Stetson Hogan Lovells US LLP (202) 637–5491
555 Thirteenth Street, N.W.
Washington, DC 20004
Party name: Organization of American Historians, et al.

Monte Neil Stewart Belnap Stewart Taylor & Morris, PLLC (208) 345–3333
12500 W. Explorer Drive
Suite 100
Boise, ID 83713
Party name: Coalition for the Protection of Marriage (Merits)

A. Lavar Taylor Director (714) 546–0445
Center for Fair Administration of Taxes
6 Hutton Centre Drive, Suite 880
Santa Ana, CA 92707
Party name: Fair Administration of Taxes (Merits)

Herbert W. Titus William J. Olson, PC (703) 356–5070
370 Maple Avenue West, Suite 4
Vienna, VA 22180 – 5615
Party name: Citizens United’s National Committee for Family, Faith and Prayer, et al. (Merits)

Jeffrey S. Trachtman Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel, LLP (212) 715–9100
1177 Avenue of the Americas
New York, NY 10036
Party name: Bishops of the Episcopal Church in the States of California, et al.

Joseph F. Tringali Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP (212) 455–2000
425 Lexington Avenue
New York, NY 10017
Party name: Services and Advocacy for Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Elders, et al. (Merits)

Barbara D. Underwood Solicitor General (212) 416–8016
Office of the Attorney General
125 Broadway, 25th Floor
New York, NY 10271–0332
Party name: New York, et al. (Merits)

Kristen Kellie Waggoner Ellis, Li & McKinstry PLLC (206) 682–0565
2025 1st Avenue, PH-A
Seattle, WA 98121–3125
Party name: Matthew B. O’Brien (Merits)

Lynn Dennis Wardle J.Reuben Clark Law School (801) 422–2617
Room 518
Provo, UT 84602
Party name: Law Professors (Merits)

Sabin Willett Bingham McCutcheon LLP (617) 951–8000
One Federal Street
Boston, MA 02110
Party name: 278 Employers and Organizations Representing Employers (Merits)

Paul R.Q. Wolfson Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr LLP (202) 663–6390
1875 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.
Washington, DC 20006
Party name: Former Senior Justice Department Officials, et al. (Jurisdiction)

Marc Wolinsky Wachtell Lipton Rosen & Katz (212) 403–1000
51 West 52nd Street
New York, NY 10019
Party name: Partnership for New York City (Merits)

Elizabeth B. Wydra Constitutional Accountability Center (202) 296–6889
1200 18th St., N.W., Suite 501
Washington, DC 20036
Party name: Cato Institute and Constitutional Accountability Center

Judi's avatar

@bkcunningham, that’s for the petitioner. I was more asking who was DEFENDING the discriminatory laws and who (as in a specific person) those people were accountable to.

bkcunningham's avatar

There are called respondents, @Judi. They are all of the names listed under the one attorney for the petitioner. I should have put a break between them. Donald B. Verrilli, Jr, is the Solicitor General or, as you would say, the attorney for the petitioner.

Judi's avatar

I’m not an attorney. Just thinking that the one who was petitioning the suit would be the petitioner and the one defending would be the respondent but that might just make to much sense and we all know how attorneys want us to have to hire them in order to understand them. ~

augustlan's avatar

I hope like hell that DOMA is struck down.

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