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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.

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I wonder how MUCH this is costing taxpayers? This is another waste of our MONEY! This law is based on lies and bigotry. Judge Joseph Tauro, of U.S. District Court in Boston ruled that part of the Defense of Marriage Act, which defines marriage as between a man and a woman, is unconstitutional. He issued rulings on two separate cases. Just because there is religious hysteria in Congress about the "sanctity" of marriage, does not give Congress those powers reserved to the states. This is clearly a 10th Amendment case. Congress divided the country into married and "single" people also is trying to divide married into 2 classes, those who are "worthy" of federal benefits and those who will be deprived of any federal benefit due to sexual "orientation". This is wrong, wrong, wrong. The courts will find congress has no evidence to prove any harm to "traditional" marriage other than adultery and divorce both of which are rampant and socially accepted!

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. The burden of defending the [Defense of Marriage Act], and the resulting costs associated with any litigation that would have otherwise been born by DOJ, has fallen to the House ... Obviously, DOJ’s decision results in DOJ no longer needing the funds it would have otherwise expended defending the constitutionality of DOMA. It is my intent that those funds be diverted to the House for reimbursement of any costs incurred by and associated with the House, and not DOJ, defending DOMA.

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