December 8, 2009

"Marriage" Movement Muffing Magic Moment

Hatched by Dafydd

One consequence of Chris Christie defeating Gov. Jon Corzine's bid for reelection in New Jersey has been the renewal of traditional marriage in the Garden State. Corzine is an outspoken advocate for same-sex marriage (SSM) -- possibly to distract the citizens of that state from his governmental (and personal) failings -- while the incoming Gov. Christie is an opponent and has vowed to veto any such legislation.

So radical marriage advocates consider the period between now and January 19th, when Governor-elect Christie becomes Gov. Christie and gains veto power, their "magic moment," their last chance to force SSM upon a sullen and unwilling New Jersey populace. Democrats and gay-advocates are trying to ram a bill through the New Jersey state legislature for Corzine to sign before he leaves office.

They scored a pyrrhic victory today when a state senate panel grudgingly approved the SSM bill by the narrowest of margins, 7 to 6; one Republican voted for it, while the Democratic chairman of the committee voted against. (I suspect if that lone Republican had behaved, the chairman would have supported his own party, leaving the vote at 7-6 again.)

The bill now goes to the full state senate for a vote, which obviously must be fairly soon, as January 19th looms. If it should pass, it would race to the assembly, which would surely pass it and hurl it towards Corzine's desk faster than the speed of light. So the senate is the only potential barrier to the legalization of same-sex marriage in Joisey.

According to the New York Times, Corzine's own defeat on November 3rd plays a role in how the state senate may ultimately vote; suffice to say that Christie's victory has put the fear of God (so to speak) into Democratic hearts:

Passage of the bill, considered a fait accompli by many legislators as recently as October, has been in jeopardy since Gov. Jon S. Corzine, a Democrat who supports gay marriage, was defeated in the election last month. That loss rattled some Democratic legislators who began to worry about riling religious and social conservatives by supporting a controversial social measure at a time of economic distress.

The vote is iffy; and if neighboring New York is any guide, support in an actual senate vote will be significantly lower than Democrats expect: The head-count in the New York state senate before the vote lured Democrats into believing that the vote would be close; the final vote was 38 to 24 against, a resounding defeat.

One suggestion making the rounds is that the New Jersey state legislature should pass the deal, and vote to put an SSM initiative on the ballot for November 2010. Let voters take responsibility for their own fundamental institutions!

Not surprisingly, this is pushed mostly by Republicans, who are confident -- given recent polling and the expected strong Republican showing for that election -- that they will win any actual referendum of the people of New Jersey:

Opponents of the measure argued that the issue was so personal that it should be put before voters in a referendum.

John Tomicki, a leader of the Coalition to Preserve and Protect Marriage, said hundreds of volunteers were in Trenton to lobby against the bill and had gathered more than 300,000 signatures on petitions urging the Legislature to reject it.

(New Jersey) Star Ledger columnist Paul Mulshine, who calls himself a conservative (some evidently don't agree), keyboarded a Ledger blogpost today calling for just such a solution:

So, try as they might, all of those people in T-shirts can’t get around the essential nature of what they are trying to do: Rush a bill through lame-duck in defiance of the voters. If this bill somehow gets signed into law, the attempt to repeal it will begin the next day, and the opponents will hold the high ground.

There’s a simple way to avoid this. And that is to put the question of same-sex marriage before the voters. The opponents of same-sex marriage say they would agree to supply the votes to put that referendum on the November ballot. As for the supporters of same-sex marriage, they say they’ve got the votes to pass that referendum.

My guess, however, is that the Democrats in the state senate would never, ever agree to such a bizarre suggestion, allowing the people to vote. Supporters of SSM have historically shied from letting mere voters have a say in crafting the definition of marriage.

SSM is a program of the radical left, the "New Left" that depends upon the gay lobby -- from GALA to GLAAD to ACT-UP, even to NAMBLA -- for a large part of its political clout. These groups tend to be Marxist or socialist in their macro-politics, and all without exception are Stalinist in their strong-arm approach to what they call "gay rights." The last thing in the world the anointed want is ordinary "straights" (sexual and political) voting on the issue; after all, experience has taught them that voters invariably "get it wrong."

They still seem to be getting it wrong. In the latest Quinnipiac University poll, released November 25th of last year (three weeks after the gubernatorial election), New Jersey registered voters opposed SSM by a narrow but statistically significant margin of 49% - 46%; this reverses a poll earlier this year, when voters supported it by 49 to 43. Since April, the support for SSM fell from an advantage of 6% to losing by 3%:

"When we asked about gay marriage in April, it won narrow approval. Now that it seems closer to a legislative vote, it loses narrowly with the public," said Maurice Carroll, director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.

"The biggest drop is among independent voters, who backed the measure 50 - 41 percent in April [and now support it by only 49-45]. And opposition among men spiked from 48 - 44 percent opposed to 57 - 38 percent."

Mulshine seems to agree:

So why not trust the people? Well, in other states, such as liberal Maine and even-more-liberal California, the voters have rejected same-sex marriage. Perhaps those polls [cited by SSM supporters] aren’t so predictive.

(In fact, the polls Mulshine quotes senate supporters as citing are old; they didn't cite the newest Quinnipiac poll noted above.)

I strongly expect a trifecta: After Maine's stunning defeat of SSM in November and New York's rejection of it less than a week ago, I predict that the New Jersey state senate will decisively repudiate same-sex marriage as well.

Unless, of course, the Left realize they are about to lose again... and simply calls off the vote altogether. Perhaps they can figure out some way to get Barack H. Obama's Environmental Protection Agency to implement same-sex marriage by federal regulation; that would be more in keeping with the Left's extreme distaste for messy democratic processes.

Cross-posted on Hot Air's rogues' gallery...

Hatched by Dafydd on this day, December 8, 2009, at the time of 2:54 PM

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