Friday, October 27, 2006

Bosma Continues Fight Against Gay Marriage

House Speaker Brian Bosma and his Republican colleagues chose gay marriage, the day after the New Jersey Supreme Court ruled that its state constitution's equal protection clause requires recognition of same-sex relationships on equal terms with opposite-sex relationships, to highlight their support of a state constitutional amendment to ban gay marriages and more. Quoting Bosma, the Star's Mary Beth Schneider reports:

The New Jersey decision 'raises the gravity of the pledge we make today," said House Speaker Brian C. Bosma, R-Indianapolis. "If Indiana is going to make a decision to change the definition of marriage in the future, that decision should not be left to an appointed judge. It should be left to elected legislators and the citizens of this state."

Schneider notes my reaction that the New Jersey court decision is the Democrats' worst nightmare because it is likely to energize "values voters", who have to date been demoralized, to get out and vote. Regardless of who controls the House next year, an amendment will be voted on by the House. Schneider writes, "House Minority Leader B. Patrick Bauer, D-South Bend, said that if Democrats win the majority, 'there will be a vote on this matter, even though I believe a constitutional amendment is redundant.'" She adds, "Republican 'efforts to make this a divisive campaign issue will not succeed,' Bauer said, accusing the GOP of a frantic attempt to divert voter attention from other issues, including property taxes and the leasing of the Indiana Toll Road."

Schneider notes both my and Orentlicher's observation that the amendment, as proposed, will affect more than just same-sex couples:

The amendment has two parts. One defines marriage as between a man and woman. The second says that neither the constitution nor any state law can be construed as giving "the legal incidents of marriage" to unmarried couples or groups.

Bosma said that will not affect the inheritance and property rights, medical decision-making and visitation, insurance and other benefits that nonmarried couples often share. Those are protected by other laws, he said.

But Welsh and others, including state Rep. David Orentlicher, D-Indianapolis, were skeptical. Orentlicher, a physician and attorney who teaches at Indiana University School of Law-Indianapolis, was one of the handful of legislators, all Democrats, who voted against the amendment in 2005.

He noted that in Michigan, which adopted a similar constitutional amendment, the attorney general has ruled that government bodies, including cities and universities, cannot offer domestic-partner benefits. And in Ohio, he said, some lower courts have ruled that the amendment means the state's domestic-violence laws do not apply to unmarried couples.

Many believe that if the Democrats recapture the House, the second paragraph of the amendment will be taken out of SJR-7. That, of course, will restart the time clock on the amendment. It will then have to be approved by two successive sessions of the General Assembly, meaning the first date it could appear on the ballot is 2010. If no changes are made to the amendment, it will appear on the ballot in 2008.

It is disappointing that Gov. Mitch Daniels (R) chose to wade into this issue on the side of its proponents. "I believe in the traditional definition of marriage," he said Thursday. "That's not an excuse for discrimination or other violations of people's civil rights, but marriage has a very special, very sacred, very specific meaning, and I think it ought to be affirmed."


Wilson46201 said...

About damn time AdvanceIndiana said anything whatsoever about this story of official Republican Party homophobia - last night you were too busy hating on the most gay-friendly politician in Indiana: Julia Carson. Shameful about the GOP and shameful about AdvanceIndiana...

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
Think about this.
What happen to the basic laws of nature? Adam and Steve...Mary and Eve together can not reproduce themselves. The end of mankind's existence in the world.

Wilson46201 said...

Let's have a fertility test be mandatory before a str8 marriage. Barren women and infertile husbands cant reproduce - thus the END OF THE WORLD!

Woman past menopause should not be permitted to marry either - she cant be a breeder, can she?

A sworn and notarized affidavit should be required before marriage pledging to produce at least one child within 3 years. If the baby isnt forthcoming, the marriage should be dissolved and the perjurious couple jailed!

Just how stupid is the above commenter?

Anonymous said...

Just curious as to your intrepretation of the Guv's statement.

This is from the First Republican blogsite:
"It would be a mistake to interpret the Governor's carefully worded statement as support for this sweeping amendment, and instead it is appropriate to understand the Governor's statement as support for the traditional definition of marriage and concern for the use of that definition as an excuse for discrimination.

In my opinion, this amendment must be changed if it is to accord with the Governor's views."

Gary R. Welsh said...


I'm not as charitable to Daniels on this issue as Chris is. Remember, he unnecessarily stuck his nose into the Indy HRO debate. He said it was not needed, that employers should be free to hire who they please, and that government shouldn't be sticking its nose into their hiring decisions. That, added to this statement about gay marriage, makes his words ring a little hollow.

Anonymous said...

I'm sick of this DIMwitted nonsense!
"Values Voters" have only been energized to 'get out'n vote' by all this B*llS**t by the DIMs!!
I'm not 'depressed' I'm not EVEN a "Values Voter".
I'm ENERGIZED to VOTE against this TAKE US FOR GRANTED DIMwitted Party that takes us for granted!
Wilson needs to post his resume on Monster dot com without delay!
I'm lining up people to drive to the polls who think likewisse!
IF a "Gay" couple couples it don't hurt me! Each as an individual has the same Rights as me - but no more than me.... THAT's whats Rights are all about. Carson's people are still stuck in the 60'
s and don't seem to have noticed we way beyond that now. Hoping the "DIMs" wake up is about like hoping the Easter Bunny lays a golden egg in the yard!