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BIG SHIFT Obama Backs DOMA Repeal Henry Velandia, right, and Joshua Vandiver at their wedding. (Credit: Joshua Vandiver)

Obama Backs DOMA Repeal

President Obama has said his position on gay marriage is “evolving,” and the latest step in that evolution was revealed Tuesday. Press Secretary Jay Carney said Obama now supports the Respect for Marriage Act, a bill that would repeal the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act, which bars the federal government from recognizing same-sex unions. The administration had previously said it would no longer defend the law against challenges in court, a ruling that raised hackles on the right; House Speaker John Boehner wants Congress to defend the law if Attorney General Eric Holder won’t. And Obama has also successfully worked for the end of the military’s “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy on gay soldiers. The Senate Judiciary Committee will discuss the bill Wednesday.

July 19, 2011 2:51 PM