Yesterday, the House voted, once again, to codify same sex marriage, this time using the exact same wording the Senate did when it passed there last week. In the House, 39 Republicans joined every single Democrat to give the bill a thumping 258-169 win. Only the closet cases and hardcore homophobes voted against it.
I don’t know every single closeted Republican, but the ones I do know to be in the closet among the NO votes on the Respect for Marriage Act are
Madison Cawthorn (NC), poor thing
Matt Gaetz (FL)
Patrick McHenry (NC)
Jason Smith (MO)
Adrian Smith (NE)
Aside from all the bigots, crackpots and extremists— like Marjorie Traitor Greene, Lauren Boebert, Paul Gosar, Gym Jordan, Steve Scalise, Bob Good (VA), Mo Brooks, Andrew Clyde, Scott Perry, Andy Biggs… that whole crew— there were also a handful of NO votes from Republicans who might actually have miscalculated politically, like Mario Diaz-Balart (FL), Stephanie Bice (Oklahoma City), Maria Salazar (FL), Jeff Van Drew (NJ), Victoria Spartz (IN), Brian Mast (FL)… we’ll see; gays don’t forget. Speaking on the floor against the bill, Good, an extremist sociopath and one of the GOP’s top hate-mongers, said “I rise today in strong opposition to the so-called Respect for Marriage Act— honestly the bill should be called the ‘Disrespect for Marriage Act.’ This bill certainly disregards God’s definition of marriage, a definition that has served his creation well for more than 5,000 years of recorded history. And his definition is the only one that really matters.”
Gym Jordan, a central figure, as a wrestling coach, in a gay pedophilia scandal that was covered top before he was elected to Congress, is slated to become chair of the House Judiciary Committee that will spend its time investigating Hunter Biden’s penis, claimed that “Democrats have conjured up this nonexistent threat based on one line in Justice Thomas’s concurrence in Dobbs. And they are misunderstanding, or they are deliberately misrepresenting, what Justice Thomas wrote. Justice Thomas made the same point that he’s made for years: that the collection of rights secured by the doctrine of substantive due process is better understood as being a function of the Constitution’s Privileges and Immunities Clause. That’s it.” So he voted against marriage equality for the LGBTQ community and fro interracial couples.
Annie Karni reported how some party operatives and rich GOP donors— some who are gay and some with gay children— worked behind the scenes rounding up congressional Republicans to vote for the bill. They spent $1.7 million prodding reluctant Republicans to do the right thing. “Their quiet work,” wrote Karni, “helps explain how a bill to ensure recognition of same-sex marriages across the country went from being the subject of an election-season political maneuver that few expected to be enacted to an initiative embraced by a decisive majority of senators, and an unexpected victory for the gay rights movement that will be one of the final acts of the Democratic-controlled Congress.”
The push was led by Ken Mehlman, President George W. Bush’s campaign manager in 2004 and a former chairman of the Republican National Committee who came out as gay in 2010, and Centerline Action, a centrist nonprofit funded by him and Reginald Brown, a lawyer in Bush’s White House, among others.
It involved flooding the phone lines of Republican senators with calls from constituents who favored the same-sex marriage measure, presenting them with polling that showed that voters were more likely to support a proponent of the bill than somebody who opposed it, and a public pressure campaign aimed at demonstrating widespread conservative support for the legislation.
‘When this popped in the House, we immediately went into action and reached out to all of those operatives and supporters and activists who had been engaged in this issue and kind of got the gang back together,’ said James Dozier, the president of Centerline’s board. A former Republican congressional aide, Dozier is married to a man and has long pressed for same-sex marriage rights.
…The legislation’s success has reflected a tectonic shift in public opinion on the issue of same-sex marriage that has occurred over the past decade, transforming it from a divisive political issue into one that has become widely accepted by members of both parties. But the Republican strategists behind the effort knew that conveying that shift would be critical to GOP lawmakers who might otherwise still regard embracing same-sex marriage rights as too risky.
Originally 47 Republicans voted for the bill, compared to yesterday’s 39. So which Republicans let their inner-bigots run wild and loose after fear of the voters was no longer a factor?
Cliff Bentz (OR)
Brian Mast (FL)
Dan Meuser (PA)
Burgess Owens, who voted “present” yesterday (UT)
Scott Perry (PA)
Maria Salazar (FL)
Jeff Van Drew (NJ)
Adam Kinzinger and Lee Zeldin, who originally voted for the bill, were absent yesterday.
Jaime Herrera Beutler (WA) went in the other direction. She voted NO in July when she was running for reelection against a homophobic MAGAt, Joe Kent. But he beat her anyway (and then lost the general) and she did the right thing yesterday. Maybe she would have won the primary if she voted her conscience in July.