Wednesday, June 7, 2006

Thanks for the Reminder

Even Republicans are admitting that the same-sex marriage amendment debate is doing them little good except reveal that they’re just sucking up to the Religious Reich.

Senator Rick Santorum, Republican of Pennsylvania and a chief proponent of the marriage ban, conceded that the issue was one many Republicans could do without.

“I know in many meetings of our colleagues when the issue of marriage comes up, heads drop,” Mr. Santorum said in a floor speech. “It is just an issue that people just feel uncomfortable talking about. It’s something that maybe in some respects they feel like, why do we even have to? Why is this even an issue?”

Dismissing the idea that politics had played a role in the timing, he said Senate Republicans had decided to act because the institution of marriage was under threat, and court decisions were slow in coming.

But one Republican strategist, Ed Rollins, said it was a mistake for the president and Senate leaders to focus attention on a marriage ban now, in what could look like a panicked reaction to shrinking public support.

“What the president needs to do is look like a leader, not be somebody who looks like a politician who is overreacting to polls,” Mr. Rollins said. “If anything, he is reminding people of what they don’t like about the Republican Party.”

As if we’ve forgotten about Tom DeLay, Randy “Duke” Cunningham, a budget deficit and a faltering economy, Iraq, Terri Schiavo, warrantless wiretapping, stem cell research, $3 gasoline, FEMA, Hurricane Katrina, Harriet Miers, health care, port security, No Child Left Behind…. Gay-bashing or idol-worship is just one of the things people don’t like.

Jim Morin’s cartoon from the Miami Herald is particularly appropriate: