Boehner maxes out DOMA defense fund

John BoehnerBY CHRIS JOHNSON
Washington Blade

The House Republican-led panel that has taken up defense of the Defense of Marriage Act in court has maxed out the $1.5 million cost cap set to hire private attorneys to advocate for the anti-gay law, according to a report from Democratic lawmakers.

On Tuesday, Democrats on the Committee on House Administration made public a report stating the House Bipartisan Legal Advisory Group — which took up defense of DOMA after the Obama administration announced it would no longer defend the law in court — has reached expenses totaling out to $1,447,996.73 over the course of fiscal years 2011 and 2012.

That’s just shy of the $1.5 million cost cap that House Republicans set last year to pay private attorney Paul Clement, a former U.S. solicitor general under the Bush administration, to defend DOMA. Thus far, Clement has lost in five federal courts against lawsuits challenging the constitutionality of DOMA — most notably after U.S. First Circuit Court of Appeals became the first appellate court to strike down the law.

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