Legal analysis: Obama overlooked SCOTUS ruling in refusing to defend DOMA


Attorney Paul Benjamin Linton wrote this legal analysis for the Thomas More Society:

In deciding to abandon the defense of § 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act, the Attorney General has overlooked a binding precedent of the Supreme Court. In Baker v. Nelson, 191 N.W.2d 185 (Minn. 1971), a same-sex couple challenged on federal constitutional grounds a state law which, as interpreted by the state supreme court, reserved marriage to opposite-sex couples. Baker, 191 N.W.2d at 185-86 . . . The Supreme Court dismissed their appeal for want of a substantial federal question. Baker v. Nelson, 409 U.S. 810 (1972). Under well established precedent, the dismissal of the appeal in Baker for want of a substantial federal question constitutes a decision on the merits that is binding on lower courts on the issues presented and necessarily decided. (A response to the Administration’s Decision Not to Defend Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act)