The Defense of Marriage Act is under attack by the very President who signed it into law.
Former President Bill Clinton, who signed the controversial piece of legislation that no U.S. State is obligated to recognize same-sex marriage from another state, has come out and stated that DOMA is “incompatible with our Constitution”. The news of Clinton’s reversal is equally frustrating, welcomed and historical in its context.
Many progressives probably attempted to suppress an eyeroll when Clinton wrote his statement acknowledging his change-of-heart as its existence has been targeted by the liberal community since its installation in 1996. It is welcomed, in a better now than never sort of way, but frankly a lot of people were discriminated by their government for 17 years now and it has to be a slap in the face to hear that the guy who signed it doesn’t really like it anymore.
But historical? The same-sex marriage movement has gained a lot of steam lately and this is just one more chapter to write in the drive to eliminate DOMA; a truly discriminatory piece of legislation. If DOMA is ruled unconstitutional by the Supreme Court, many same-sex couples could finally gain acceptance under law. It’s a true testament to the activism by same-sex marriage supporter for a move like to this be considered a political boon as opposed to an anvil.
Now why does Clinton make his statements? One could surmise that with the anticipation of another Hillary Clinton presidential campaign, this is just one more blemish that the Clinton machine is attempting to gloss over and fix. Progressives and LGBT couples may not forget DOMA but it’s possible that others will see it as the Clintons attempt to modernize and reinvent themselves as fighters for civil rights.
Bill Clinton is a prodigal politician and for all of his faults, you have to appreciate his love for campaigning and scheming. He is a boon to the Democratic Party and its for reasons like this, his ego might be a tad larger than most but he has a good way of sensing the mood of the nation. When Bill Clinton makes a move there is a reason for it, it’s not necessarily bowing down to conscience but a way to stay either one step ahead or to be on exact equal footing.
Remember, Clinton’s chief Democratic rivals (at this very moment) are Andrew Cuomo and Joe Biden. Cuomo, who signed the legislation legalizing same-sex marriage in New York and Biden, who stated that he was for same-sex marriage before Barack Obama already pass the so-called “litmus test” on the issue. But has taken Hillary Clinton a long time to “evolve” from supporting civil unions to supporting marriage equality and it wasn’t until 2008 when she stated she would repeal Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.
But if the Clintons are moving forward on same-sex marriage, then the country is one step closer to being a discriminatory-free zone from its government.