Rep. Todd Akin (R-MO) — who successfully attached an amendment to the House defense authorization bill prohibiting federal property from being used for marriages that are inconsistant with DOMA — is speaking out against the Pentagon’s decision to allow chaplains to wed gay and lesbian couples on military bases.
“The Department of Defense has decided to put the White House’s liberal agenda ahead of following the law,” he said in a statement released on his website. “The Defense of Marriage Act makes it clear that for the purposes of the federal government, marriage is defined as between one man and one woman. The use of federal property or federal employees to perform gay marriage ceremonies is a clear contravention of the law.”
DOMA does define marriage as a union between a man and a woman, but it “does not limit the type of religious ceremonies a chaplain may perform in a chapel on a military installation,” nor does it prevent the government from extending certain privileges to same-sex couples — in this case, permitting gays and lesbians to use military facilities for wedding celebrations. Under DOMA, their marriages would still not be recognized by the Defense Department, nor would they entitle same-sex couples to all of the benefits afforded to their heterosexual counterparts.
Family Research Council’s Tony Perkins has also condemned DoD’s decision claiming that “It is outrageous that only ten days after repeal of the law against homosexuality in the Armed Forces, the Defense Department is already pushing the military further down the slippery slope.” “The Defense of Marriage Act remains the law in America, defining marriage as a union of one man and one woman for all purposes under federal law,” he said.