Here is Paul Bedard of US News reporting on Newt Gingrich's bizarre assertion that president Obama has said he will stop enforcing the Defense of Marriage Act.
Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, who plans within two weeks to announce if he will run for president, said today that if President Obama doesn't change his mind and order his Justice Department to enforce the Defense of Marriage Act, Republicans in Congress should strike back and even consider impeachment proceedings.
"I believe the House Republicans next week should pass a resolution instructing the president to enforce the law and to obey his own constitutional oath, and they should say if he fails to do so that they will zero out [defund] the office of attorney general and take other steps as necessary until the president agrees to do his job," said Gingrich. "His job is to enforce the rule of law and for us to start replacing the rule of law with the rule of Obama is a very dangerous precedent."
Do either of these individuals - Bedard or Gingrich - understand the distinction between enforcing a law, and, when presented with a circuit court case without binding precedents in its jursdiction, a decision not to defend the law in court, while offering the House of Representatives a chance to do so?
Even the Newsmax interviewer stated the position correctly at the beginning, and Newsmax's report hedges more than US News by saying that Obama would not "fully enforce" the law. Neither is true, but it shows that Bedard and US News are now more propagandistic than the loony right Newsmax. Now I know that Gingrich is not the brightest light on the Christmas tree, and may be simply confused. Here is Gingrich's interview:
Here is the salient passage from Holder's letter to Boehner:
The President has informed me that Section 3 will continue to be enforced by the Executive Branch. To that end, the President has instructed Executive agencies to continue to comply with Section 3 of DOMA, consistent with the Executive’s obligation to take care that the laws be faithfully executed, unless and until Congress repeals Section 3 or the judicial branch renders a definitive verdict against the law’s constitutionality. This course of action respects the actions of the prior Congress that enacted DOMA, and it recognizes the judiciary as the final arbiter of the constitutional claims raised.
So what Gingrich said is untrue - but a powerful meme. At best, it's wrong and he's merely once again revealing how intellectually vapid he is; at worst, it's a conscious decision to lie. When appealing to the Newsmax right, expect the various candidates to argue that the president is not going to enforce the marriage law on the books, thereby abdicating his constitutional duty. Gingrich even hints at impeachment on those grounds. This lie needs to be countered.
The first commenter on Bedard's piece points out the error and yet no correction has been made.