Archives – March, 2011
By Adam Bink
After the Supreme Court declined a request to hear a lawsuit intending to allow a voter referendum on Washington DC’s same-sex marriage law in January, Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) — chairman of the conservative Republican Study Committee (RSC) — told The Hill that he will push for a vote to establish a referendum to overturn the law. Now, Congressional Quarterly is reporting that Jordan is drafting the proposal and expects “to draw strong support from House Republicans”:
He and other conservatives say they are weighing how best to promote the vote as an example of Republicans fulfilling a campaign promise. The GOP’s 2010 Pledge to America vowed that a Republican majority would “honor families, traditional marriage, life and the private and faith-based organizations that form the core of our American values.” [...]
But several lawmakers said Boehner has resisted making a similar commitment to press measures in opposition to gay marriage.
The Speaker skirted demands from conservatives earlier this month for a vote on a proposal to instruct House lawyers to defend a provision in the 1996 Defense of Marriage (PL 104-199) that directs the government to recognize marriages only between men and women.
The level of Republican support is difficult to gauge as the GOP leadership attempts to keep the focus on the economy and remains weary of weighing in too heavily on LGBT issues. In this case, not only does a majority of Americans now supports same-sex marriage, but a Congressional intervention into the D.C. law undermines conservatives’ efforts to present their campaign as a local effort to give DC residents the right to vote on the issue. Any additional focus on anti-LGBT issues could also bolster the presidential candidacies of Rep. Michelle Bachmann (R-MN) and Rick Santorum, who would face the steepest road in a general election.
It’s been through the City Council, the Mayor, court challenge after court challenge. It won’t go anywhere and it’s not a long-term campaign that will succeed. Waste, waste, waste.
By Adam Bink
This morning, Courage Campaign and OutServe released a new video from the parents of US Army Corporal Andrew Wilfahrt, a gay soldier killed in combat last month in Kandahar Province, Afghanistan.
Tomorrow will be 100 days since President Obama signed repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”. Repeal has yet to be certified.
Please share the video with family, friends and colleagues. We need to spread this story so people know that we are still waiting for servicemembers like Andrew to be able to serve openly.
By Adam Bink
A very busy first day back (on the job organizing at Courage), so light posting today. We’re hard at work with an allied organization on a just heartbreaking video around “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” I’ll be posting here tomorrow. It’s really something.
A few items of note:
- The Indiana Senate overwhelmingly approved a ban on same-sex marriage and civil unions. It must pass the legislature again in the next session.
- At the same time, the Washington State Senate passed legislation to recognize out-of-state same-sex marriages, and recognize those married as domestic partners in the state. Gov. Gregoire pledged to sign the bill.
- Congressional House Republicans are going your taxpayer money to waste time bashing repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” in a Friday hearing.
- I am so freaking excited for a Glee episode cover of “Born This Way”. Every time I listen to the song I smile and feel proud of who I am.
- I am glad Rep. Frank will wait for more co-sponsors before re-introducing ENDA, but the way today’s news went down came across as “I’m having trouble finding people to support the bill”. I almost rather no one said anything at all about the bill until it’s, well, ready. It’s not a criticism of anyone in particular, just a frustration.
- Ultimately positive, but not really big news on green card applications for bi-national couples. DOMA remains in effect.
- For those of you interested in coming or already coming, I’m speaking on at the Social Learning Summit, a conference on the intersection of social media, education and advocacy, on Sunday at 2 PM at American University in DC. The panel is “A Social Bill of Rights: Civil Rights and Social Media” and I’ll be talking about P8TT in part. Register and details here.
What else is up?