Scott Walker is tasting the rainbow

Oh boy. Hide your wife! Hide your kids!
Here comes Adam and Steve, not Adam and Eve!

“Scott Walker, who voted for the state’s ban and has been a longtime opponent of gay marriage, dodged questions Friday about whether he still supports the prohibition. He said he didn’t know whether the ban would withstand legal challenges, and that he can’t judge that because he’s not an attorney.

Walker also said he didn’t know how significant it would be for the state if gay marriage were to be legalized.”Green Bay Gazette

Lacking a license to practice the law never stopped Walker from pontificating on such matters before. And where’s his famous “courage”?

As for J.B., he sees the rainbow writing on the wall:

“Sensing trouble ahead for Wisconsin’s gay marriage ban, Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen took the unusual step Friday of asking a federal judge to immediately block her own decision if she does strike down the ban.”source

Basically Walker is trying to bore everybody into submission (A.K.A. “be moderate”).

It’s not great for Team Burke, who is also doing a fantastic job of boring us to death. If the demonizing on marriage equality is taken out of the debate and kept in the courts, then LGBT ire could fizzle.

What’s also significant is that Burke has taken a STAND on marriage equality and there is simply not a heck of a lot she so firmly stands for.

Here’s a snippet from a recent Burke email:

“Everyone should have the freedom to marry whomever they choose. Will you stand with me in support of marriage equality?”
source

Oh! How unionists (like me) would love to be so pandered to! If you ever read a Burke email that says, “Will you stand with me in support of collective bargaining rights for public sector unions?” you’ll know somebody’s account got hacked.

Union supporting isn’t safe nowadays. Gay marriage supporting is.

Fifty-five percent of the people polled in the May 21 Marquette poll said they support same-sex marriage and a review of the 2006 marriage amendment battle in Wisconsin suggests that backing it even back then was the political equivalent of wearing reflective tape and a helmet at all times.

In 2006, democrats of all stripes were roused to visit the polls and elect both a Dem governor and a majority Democratic Party state senate. They did not defeat the marriage ban.

Basically, socially conservative Dems stuck to their opinions on marriage but WEREN’T so dissed by their party that they crossed to the GOP.

In 2006 26% of self-proclaimed liberals voted in favor of the marriage ban.

At the same time 13% of the self-identified conservatives voted against the same-sex marriage.

The moderates split down the middle.

liberals
Image above is a screen capture from CNN.com exit poll results.

Surely other factors were in play such as an abundance of anti-Bush sentiment, poor messaging on the part of Fair Wisconsin (A.K.A. Mike Tate), and the fact that there was also an advisory referendum on the death penalty on the same ballot.*

Still, it’s fair to say that the marriage equality issue does not necessarily get the results Republicans want. In Wisconsin it helped Dem voters get off their butts *in a mid-term* and elect a lot of Democrats.

Evangelical Backlash To Come?

The gay marriage issue has traditionally been a lather-generator for the evangelical right wing. I assume that voting blok stands to attention when Scott Walker tweets about Noah’s ark or he writes that God is speaking to him about divine “abundant grace and the paramount need to stay humble”.

That voting blok, I assume, is pleased with its public subsidy for religious schools. That voting blok is likely pleased to see a “Choose Life” license plate cruising down a Wisconsin highway – and maybe their hearts swell to think that the plates subsidize anti-abortion centers.

They gained under Walker. But is it enough? Are they so mollified they won’t be angry with Walker’s weakness on this issue? I’ll withhold judgement until a couple of Sundays have passed. New sermons take time to write.

—————–
*Other complexities to consider in the 2006 election: the simplicity of the right’s message, politicking from the pulpit [with no IRS interference]. Also, there are indicators that black Democrats voted heavily for the same sex marriage ban due to pastor influence. Yet it’s unlikely that they were so put-off by Dems that they flipped to the GOP – which still meant more Dem Party turn-out in a mid-term. [For evidence, see russw at Daily Kos and page 2 of this Washington Post article]

** As far as I can tell, a same-sex marriage is equivalent to regular heterosexual marriage, which I think of as a financial arrangement that causes individuals to blow budgets on 5-tier cakes and, ultimately, reduce their sex drives. Marriage isn’t called “settling down” for nothing. It’s conservative. It’s boring. Yet it’s taken this long for the country to chill out about it. It’s so strange.

Footnote:
The title references this.

Footnote II: Death penalty referendum results

Footnote III: Folkbum wrote a lot about the “hate amendment” back in the day. Good stuff.

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