President Barack Obama declared the Defense Of Marriage Act unconstitutional yesterday, and ordered the Justice Department to no longer defend it. The act, which was signed into law in by President Bill Clinton back in 1996, barred any federal recognition of same-sex marriages. Reactions were split between Democrats and Republicans. House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio), said, "while Americans want Washington to focus on creating jobs and cutting spending the president will have to explain why he thinks now is the appropriate time to stir up a controversial issue that sharply divides the nation." House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi tweeted, "Thrilled @TheJusticeDept is no longer defending an indefensible statute-all American families should be treated equally! #DOMA,"
The Takeaway's Washington correspondent, Todd Zwillich, has reactions and insights from the Hill. And with a look at the legal and constitutional implications of this, we're joined by Kenji Yoshino, Chief Justice Earl Warren professor of constitutional law at New York Universtiy School of Law.