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Faith & Credit



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Andrew Sullivan has a critique today of my recent piece on gay marriage, “The Coming Battle.” Sullivan argues that the Federal Marriage Amendment is unnecessary, because the Full Faith and Credit Clause of the Constitution will not force gay marriage in one state onto the whole country. As proof, Sullivan points to the arguments of law professor, Larry Kramer, who claims that the principle of the “public policy exception” will insure that gay marriage will not be imported from state to state. Sullivan also points to the federal Defense of Marriage Act as proof that gay marriage will not be exported from state to state. I have already answered Sullivan’s (and Kramer’s) points in my piece, “The Right Balance.” That piece was linked in my recent article, and its points have never been addressed, much less answered by Sullivan. Also note that in my recent piece I point to challenges to DOMA on grounds of the Equal Protection Clause. These will be even stronger than Full Faith and Credit challenges, and Sullivan has not addressed the Equal Protection issue at all. But it’s not just a question of the points I make against Kramer and Sullivan on Full Faith and Credit and the “public policy exception” in “The Right Balance.” The most telling point is that the litigants in the Massachusetts case have already put forward arguments attempting to invalidate DOMA and declare gay marriage as a right under the American Constitution. So I’m not the only one who disagrees with Sullivan. The very folks who are litigating the Massachusetts case have already formally demanded that the courts force gay marriage on the whole country–the very thing that Sullivan claims we have no reason to worry about.



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