The Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) was in the news yesterday thanks to a decision by the 1st U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals finding DOMA unconstitutional. TNR has been speaking out against the law since its inception. Here's a look at an article by William Eskridge from a 1996 issue of the magazine that explores the historical circumstances, constitutional issues, and electoral politics surrounding DOMA, all of which will remain in focus as DOMA meets with further scrutiny in the Supreme Court: The full faith and credit clause is about to become the Constitution's hottest provision.
The conventional wisdom as polls opened in Alabama and Mississippi was that Santorum would likely be the big loser by failing to beat Romney or snuff Gingrich. That scenario made sense: Santorum was not only flagging in the polls, but had a decided financial disadvantage in these two states. (His super PAC trailed Team Romney in media buys by a seven-to-one ratio in Alabama and a five-to-one margin in Mississippi; it also had fewer ads than Gingrich ‘s super PAC). But now Gingrich is toast, whether he immediately accepts it or not, and Romney has failed to seal the deal.
Steve Jobs By Walter Isaacson (Simon & Schuster, 627 pp., $35) I. In 2010, Der Spiegel published a glowing profile of Steve Jobs, then at the helm of Apple. Jobs’s products are venerated in Germany, especially by young bohemian types. Recently, the Museum of Arts and Crafts in Hamburg presented an exhibition of Apple’s products, with the grandiloquent subtitle “On Electro-Design that Makes History”—a good indication of the country’s infatuation with the company.
If you think the controversy over birth control and health insurance is simple, you probably haven't spent enough time hearing out the other side. I happen to support the administration's decision to make contraception coverage mandatory, limiting the rule's "conscience" exemption to churches and institutions that primarily employ co-religionists. But I also think the critics make some valid points. Chief among them: Freedom of religion means the freedom to observe the tenets of one's faith.
Last night’s GOP debate featured an argument over an unusual topic: Newt Gingrich’s recent call for colonizing the moon. Lunar colonies, another one of Newt’s “big ideas,” were decried as a silly waste of money by Mitt Romney, who said that he would fire any subordinate who approached him with such a suggestion. Are lunar settlements a good idea? Some scholars think so. As one paper by the University of Hawaii’s G.
On January 1st, Hawaii and Delaware began to offer same-sex civil unions. That brings the number of states recognizing same-sex civil unions to five. Meanwhile, six states and Washington, D.C. now allow same-sex marriage. What impact has marriage equality had on same-sex couples? A 2009 study examining same-sex couples in Massachusetts (where gay marriage has existed since 2004) gives some perspective.
At the public screening of The Descendants I saw, there was gentle but earnest applause as the film ended. It’s merited, and I suspect it came from a middle-aged audience that is weary of noise and violence in our films, and respectful of anyone prepared to deal candidly with family material. That doesn’t mean this is softer than PG. It’s an R film, with a lot of rough language, most of it coming from a ten-year-old and a seventeen-year-old.
Here is what President Obama said on Saturday while speaking to business leaders at the APEC summit in Hawaii when asked by a moderator about impediments to foreign investment in the U.S.: “[T]he United States is still the largest recipient of foreign investment in the world. And there are a lot of things that make foreign investors see the U.S. as a great opportunity—our stability, our openness, our innovative free market culture. But we’ve been a little bit lazy, I think, over the last couple of decades.
Everybody hates the No Child Left Behind Act. In the last few weeks, both conservative Republicans and President Obama have announced plans to overhaul George W. Bush’s signature education law by sending power over K-12 schooling back to the states. On the surface, this might seem like a rare moment of bipartisan consensus. Don’t believe it. The two plans actually represent radically different views of the federal government’s responsibility for helping children learn. To see why, it helps to understand some common misconceptions about NCLB.