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Obama’s ‘Gay Rights Adviser’ (And Lobbyist) Robert Raben Loves To See DoJ Defending DOMA

If Robert Raben, the attorney and lobbyist who worked in the Clinton administration’s Justice Department, is truly “a gay-rights adviser close to the Obama team,” it only further demonstrates the type of ridiculous legal theory the White House is employing in defending DOMA.

“[I]t would be a wonderful fantasy to live in a world in which I and the people who agree with me get to decide which laws the Justice Department defends, but it’s not a world I would want to live in,” says Raben, who was named to Washington Life‘s Power 100 last year, when pitted against Richard Socarides, the Clinton administration’s LGBT adviser who suddenly found his critic’s voice. “We have a beautiful opinion from one of the 900+ federal district judges. At some point in the very near future, a fantastic district court judge in say Jacksonville, Florida, is going to strike down health-care reform as unconstitutional and those of us on the left would be furious if the Department of Justice relied on this one judge’s opinion to stop enforcing the mandates of the Health-Care Reform Act.”

Missing from Raben’s logic fail, of course, is the little part about DoJ regularly picking and choosing which laws to defend based on whether it thinks they’re constitutional.

But what else would you expect from Raben, whose firm The Raben Group serves as lobbyists for the Human Rights Campaign, the ultimate in Obama sympathizers? Raben has a history of coming to the defense of the Obama administration. Which makes sense: Why else would he have raised huge sums of money for the Obama campaign?

By:           John Rogers
On:           Jul 14, 2010
Tagged: , , , , , ,
  • 6 Comments
    • L.
      L.

      I’m always confused when Queerty (arguably) attacks HRC whereas it (commendably) praises a straight wrestler for wearing an HRC sticker.

      Are Queerty’s left and right hands cross and not speaking to each other?

      Jul 14, 2010 at 11:18 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Brutus
      Brutus

      “Missing from Raben’s logic fail, of course, is the little part about DoJ regularly picking and choosing which laws to defend based on whether it thinks they’re constitutional.”

      And missing from your logic is a little distinction between normative and descriptive statements.

      Jul 14, 2010 at 11:26 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Sam
      Sam

      There’s enough to attack the Obama administration about without being disingenuous. The DOJ defends the U.S. Government thousands of times a year. You’ve provided one example for each of the last three administrations. Three times out of tens of thousands of cases over TWENTY YEARS does NOT equal “regularly.”

      Bash ‘em for being wimps on DADT, not issuing a stop-loss, doing nothing to support ENDA, or a million other things that are actually legitimate things to be outraged about. Don’t bash them for doing their jobs. I’d much rather the Obama DOJ defend DOMA (badly, as they are doing in this case) than have the next scary Republican administration be able to refuse to defend pro-gay laws because Obama set a precedent that the DOJ can pick and choose.

      Jul 14, 2010 at 3:57 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • B
      B

      No. 3 ยท Sam wrote, “Bash ‘em for being wimps on DADT, not issuing a stop-loss, doing nothing to support ENDA, or a million other things that are actually legitimate things to be outraged about.”

      You realize of course that a stop-loss order would have to apply to everyone, not just gays, and would probably negatively impact enlistments.

      Jul 14, 2010 at 5:59 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Yet Another
      Yet Another

      So people are Obama supporters are Obama “sympathizers” now? I know that’s a valid opinion for individuals to have I just didn’t know Queerty was dropping the charade of anything remotely like the trappings of journalism…

      Jul 14, 2010 at 7:10 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • randy
      randy

      Sorry, but there is NO requirement that the DOJ defend every law. And it isn’t just one law, but quite a few that administrations have found not important or justifiable in defending. Please get your legal facts right before you start attacking.

      The DOJ was under NO requirement to defend DOMA in court. They could have simply let it go. Do you really think there is some sort of litigation police out there, that if the DOJ had taken a pass, some justice nut would file a lawsuit to force DOJ to file a lawsuit?

      Nope. There is no. If the DOJ remained silent, there is nothing anyone can do to force them to defend this law. Queerty is right on this one.

      Furthermore, what’s worse, and what Raben is really stupid about, is that he angry about the decision on DOMA. He believes that the striking down based on 10th Amendment arguments imperils other federal programs.

      Well jesus-fucking too bad. That is EXACTLY why the DOJ should never have fought this in the first place. They KNEW that DOMA was being challenges on those grounds. Now their stupidity and faulty legal strategy has created a monster for them, and a monster problem. But the arrogant f-heads, like Raben, the HRC and Obama’s advisors, really thought that we would lose on this one and they problem would go away.

      Thank goodness it came out in our favor. Now they have to decide whether to appeal or not, and now whatever they do, there is a huge risk for the Administration. Heckova job guys!

      Jul 14, 2010 at 8:27 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·

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