Maybe right-wing “conservative” hate groups should compare notes before plotting strategy to defeat marriage rights, because their tactics in going after attorneys general who choose to defend laws on the books go in complete opposite directions. Sometimes they cheer when AGs defend laws. Sometimes they hate it! Can they possible like it both ways?
When California Attorney General Jerry Brown declared the Defense of Marriage Act unconstitutional in a response to Perry v. Schwarzenegger, he also announced he wasn’t going to bother defending it. The Family Research Council had a problem with this! They went so far as to call for Brown’s impeachment, because he was not doing his job and defending the law.
Fast forward to this week, when Wisconsin Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen (pictured) declared that even though legislators and the governor passed a law permitting a domestic partnership registry, he would not go to court to defend the law. Yet, as Good As You notes, this move was applauded by Wisconsin Family Action and the Alliance Defense Fund, which is representing the group in court.
Of course, WFA and ADF will point out that Hollen, while not defending the legislature’s law, is defending the constitution; Wisconsin voters approved a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage.
But this strategy will come around to bite ‘em in the ass: Either anti-marriage groups want attorneys general to defend the law, or they don’t. These people are the last we expected to swing both ways.