Attorney General Eric Holder: State AGs “Not Obligated” to Defend Marriage Bans
February 25, 2014 by Maureen McCarty, HRC Associate Director of Digital Media
United States Attorney General Eric Holder took another bold step as an LGBT ally yesterday, arguing in an interview with The New York Times that state attorneys general are under no obligation to defend marriage equality bans.
Instead, Holder said that state attorneys general should scrutinize state laws that call into question constitutional issues.
“Engaging in that process and making that determination is something that’s appropriate for an attorney general to do,” said Holder.
Attorney General Holder has been a leader for civil rights for LGBT Americans throughout his career in public life. From reaching the conclusion that the Defense of Marriage Act was indefensible in court to robust enforcement of the Matthew Shepard & James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act, Attorney General Holder’s leadership on LGBT issues is without comparison. Most recently, Holder announced from the stage of HRC’s New York gala the landmark changes to the way the federal government treats married lesbian and gay couples .
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