5 LGBT things you need to know today, Jan. 19

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White House responds to DOMA petition

President Obama's administration announced it would no longer defend DOMA in court

The White House responded this week to an online petition calling for the repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act, the 1996 law that prevents the federal government from recognizing same-sex unions.

The "We the People" petitions, an initiative created by the White House, offer citizens a chance to call on President Obama and his administration to act on a range of issues from social and domestic to foreign policy and the economy.

One of the most signed petitions called for the repeal of DOMA, which included some 14,000 signatures.

Here is the official response from Gautam Raghavan, from the White House Office of Public Engagement: