NEWS BRIEFS: Firm that dumped DOMA loses clients; House to vote on key abortion bill

Baptist Press
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Posted: May 03, 2011 5:30 PM
NEWS BRIEFS: Firm that dumped DOMA loses clients; House to vote on key abortion bill
WASHINGTON (BP)--The law firm that reversed course and decided not to defend the Defense of Marriage Act has lost at least two high-profile clients.

The National Rifle Association announced May 2 it was ending its relationship with King & Spalding after the law firm withdrew from an agreement with the House of Representatives to defend the 1996 law in federal court. Homosexual groups were pressuring the firm not to defend the law, which defines marriage as between a man and a woman.

"We believe King & Spalding's decision is indefensible and raises serious concerns about its ability to be a reliable and effective advocate for any client facing potentially controversial litigation," NRA attorney David Lehman said in a letter to the law firm.

Virginia Attorney General Cuccinelli, a Republican, also said his office was ending its relationship with the law firm.

"Virginia seeks firms of commitment, courage, strength and toughness, and unfortunately, what the world has learned of King & Spalding, is that your firm utterly lacks such qualities," Cuccinelli wrote in a letter to the law firm, according to The Washington Examiner.

The day that King & Spalding withdrew from the case, Paul Clement -- the King & Spaulding partner chosen to defend DOMA on behalf of the House -- resigned and said he would continue to represent the House as a member of another firm, Bancroft PLLC. Clement, U.S. solicitor general under President George W. Bush, has argued more than 50 cases before the Supreme Court.

The 1996 law is critical to preventing "gay marriage" from being legalized nationwide.

HOUSE SET TO VOTE ON ABORTION FUNDING BAN -- The U.S. House of Representatives is scheduled to vote Wednesday on the No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act, a bill that would institute a permanent government-wide ban on abortion funding. Currently, bans on abortion funding have to be renewed annually. The bill is H.R. 3.

"This bill is long overdue," Richard Land, president of the Southern Baptist Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, said in a May 2 email to constituents. "It is time that Congress once and for all make permanent the patchwork of policies barring abortion funding and apply it to every federal agency, ensuring that the millions of taxpayers who object to abortion are not forced to pay for it."

Compiled by Michael Foust, associate editor of Baptist Press.

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