Likely Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee mauled President Obama’s decision to halt the Justice Department’s legal defenses of DOMA at a roundtable lunch with reporters on Wednesday. In defense of his position, he claimed a public mandate for the controversial Clinton-era law, and linked same sex marriage to the failure of heterosexual marriages.
“I’m deeply disappointed,” Huckabee said. “They are clearly out of sync with the public.”
Huckabee noted that 33 states have affirmed, via ballot initiatives, that marriage should be between a man and a woman.
“When the voters are so overwhelmingly [supportive of DOMA] what does the president believe he knows that citizens in all these other states don’t,” Huckabee said.
In August 2010, an Associated Press poll found majority support for federal recognition of same-sex marriages, 52-46. That was up dramatically from a year before when respondents opposed gay marriage 46-53.
In October 2010, Pew found a majority still opposed to gay marriage, but support rising quickly.
Nonetheless, Huckabee opposes gay marriage on the grounds that, according to him, it destroys traditional families.
“There is a quantified impact of broken families,” Huckabee said. “[There is a] $300 billion dad deficit in America every year…that’s the amount of money that we spend as taxpayers to pick up the pieces because dads are derelict in their duties.”
Brian Beutler is TPM's senior congressional reporter. Since 2009, he's led coverage of health care reform, Wall Street reform, taxes, the GOP budget, the government shutdown fight, and the debt limit fight. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.