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Wednesday, March 24, 2004

As part of my effort to keep the Clarke coefficient below 80% I note the revised form of the proposed anti gay marriage amendment as reported in the Washington Post

The Senate Judiciary Committee held a hearing yesterday on the revised version of the proposed amendment, which states: "Marriage in the United States shall consist only of the union of a man and a woman. Neither this Constitution, nor the Constitution of any State, shall be construed to require that marriage or the legal incidents thereof be conferred upon any union other than the union of a man and a woman."

The change is that the earlier draft had also said that laws must not be construed as etc. As pointed out by many people, this would be true even if the law very specifically said that some of the legal incidents of marriage should be conferred on, for example. gay couples or for another "next of kin" or "lawyer and client". I think this might be a case in which bloggers affected the debate.

It looks like the change in wording has not changed anyone's view. That is, people, including legislators, opposed to the amendment already assumed that it would be rewritten. I, of course, am still absolutely opposed.

The Republicans are pushing this as a wedge issue. I'm not sure that this is a smart move. I guess they have polls and focus groups and stuff and know what they are doing. However, I would have thought that keeping the focus on a constitutional amendment, which is not supported by many oponents of gay marriage who respect the constitution or who actually believe in states rights, as opposed to gay marriage itself, might hurt them.

Also the headline suggests that the GOP may have exhausted the apparently infinite patience of the staff of the Washington Post including the guy who writes headlines

"GOP Playing Politics on Gay Marriage, Democrats Say
Seeking Votes at Polls If Not on Hill, Party Pushes Amendment

By Charles Babington
Washington Post Staff Writer
Wednesday, March 24, 2004; Page A02 "

Notice the subheadline doesn't even have a pro forma "according to critics" or another "Democrats say"
We're not yet at the "Ford to New York 'drop dead'" level but we're getting there.

I wonder how Republicans who have cowed the main stream media by claiming it has a bias against them will react if the main stream media turns against them.

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