When the Department of Justice decided not to defend the unconstitutional Defense of Marriage Act, House Republican Leadership contracted legal services from Bancroft PLLC to defend discrimination. Despite several letters of objection and repeated questioning, the contract was signed without bipartisan review or thorough vetting. Representatives Robert A. Brady (D-PA), Charles Gonzalez (D-TX), and Zoe Lofgren (D-CA) released the following statement upon learning that the Republican Leadership increased the contracted amount from $500,000 to $1.5 Million of taxpayer money.
We were disappointed to learn that House Republicans will spend even more money on defending the indefensible and unconstitutional Defense of Marriage Act. The original contract was a misguided promise to waste a half-million dollars of taxpayer money. Further spending to defend DOMA is simply unconscionable.
The entire contracting process has lacked any semblance of transparency. Our letters of warning and our questions about how any of the numbers were reached and where the money would come from have gone unanswered. Now, we find that Speaker Boehner's hand-picked lawyers have exhausted the half-million dollars we were told would be the total cost and they need an additional $1 million dollars --- or 300%of the original contract, to continue the work.
This ongoing expense is a complete waste of taxpayer money. We call on the Republican Leadership to explain why they will invest in protecting discrimination and how any of this can put Americans back to work.