Gay Reps. Tammy Baldwin and Barney Frank this that because House Speaker John Boehner opted against a floor vote to decide to defend DOMA in court, and instead had a panel of five House members make a decision, there are schisms within the GOP over whether to support gay rights. Something about not wanting to force House Republicans to go on record with their pro-gay votes!
Speaking at an eQualityGiving panel, Baldwin notes:
I can never speak for Barney Frank but I want to share with you the point that he made at that [DOMA repeal] press conference around the way in which the Republicans decided to defend the Defense of Marriage Act. They had two paths they could take: They could bring a resolution to the floor directing the general counsel of the House to defend the constitutionality of DOMA, or they could do what they did do which was convene the five top leaders of the House — the three Republicans and two Democrats — and vote to direct the general counsel to defend the constitutionality of DOMA. Barney [Frank] pointed out that the significance of their choosing the latter course of action was that they didn’t want their members on record because it would probably have shown that there was more support for repealing DOMA today than there was the last time a roll call vote was taken about this, but also probably this happened because they were hearing more and more from members of the Republican party who don’t want to take these socially divisive votes anymore. So, long story short, I think there’s less likelihood today that we will see damaging anti-equality legislation making it through the House then there was the last time Republicans had control of the house.
But won’t it be so much fun to watch House Republicans violate their own self-imposed mandate — to only do what The People want — by pushing back against the inevitable death of DOMA when 53 percent of Americans now say they support same-sex marriage rights.