April 18, 2011 4:26 PM
King & Spalding's Clement to Fight Against Same-Sex Marriage
Posted by Ross Todd
House Speaker John Boehner hired King & Spalding partner Paul Clement to defend the Defense of Marriage Act. A spokesman for King & Spalding confirmed that Clement had been retained on the matter, but declined to comment further, citing a firm policy not to comment on client matters.
Boehner and Republican House leaders announced plans last month to defend the law in court after the Obama administration declined to do so. That move followed Attorney General Eric Holder's February announcement that the Department of Justice would no longer defend DOMA, the 1996 law that defines marriage as a legal union between one man and one woman.
Clement becomes the second former solicitor from the Bush era to weigh in on the same-sex marriage debate. The first, of course, was Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher partner Theodore Olson, who famously sided with same-sex marriage advocates. He joined with former Bush v. Gore foe David Boies to challenge California's ban on same-sex marriage.
Clement's decision to take on the DOMA assignment received a cold reception from gay and lesbian advocates. "King & Spalding was not required to take up this defense and should be ashamed of associating themselves with an effort to deny rights to their fellow citizens," said Human Rights Campaign president Joe Solmonese in a statement.
According to the HRC Web site, King & Spalding scored a 95 out of a possible 100 points last year on the organization's Corporate Equality Index--a survey that rates large U.S. employers' policies and practices pertinent to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender employees.Make a comment