There is much to thank Wisconsin for these last months. From spirited protests and recall efforts bar none, to being the cause of renewed progressive enthusiasm nationwide and the drama of watching a judicial race's returns, rooting for someone called Kloppenburg as if it were November 4, 2008.
A week ago, I asked some of you awesome Wisconsin Kossacks to contact their Democratic Senator, Herb Kohl, requesting that he come out in support of S.598 repealing the Defense of Marriage Act. The Courage Campaign also did its part (okay, the vast, vast lion's share! -- but then, they have 700,000 members!), and yesterday Adam Bink, New Media director at the Courage Campaign and Kossack, announced (drum roll, please)
Last week, over 1,000 Courage Campaign members wrote to Sen. Kohl... we just heard from Sen. Kohl's office: he will become the 10th and final vote we need on the Senate Judiciary Committee to pass S. 598, the Respect for Marriage Act, out of committee. Off we go!
So THANK YOU WISCONSIN, and I'd particularly like to thank the Kossacks who, in my diary's comments, indicated that they had contacted the Senator:
Plus all the other Kossacks and Courage Campaign members who did the same silently.
We've seen here how a targeted 'assault' can have a big effect, and how every letter and call can really help in that effort.
It's going to take lots of time (as in years), patience and persistence, but the campaign to repeal DOMA is only going to pick up steam as we continue.
When we introduced this bill with Sen. Feinstein, we started at 8 votes in the Senate Judiciary Committee and 19 Senators in support overall. Since then we targeted and picked up Sen. Klobuchar (D-MN), the story of which I detailed here. We then moved onto Sen. Kohl and asked our members to tell him to support DOMA repeal, and why it was so important to them -- especially if they voted for, volunteered for, or donated to him in the past. Sen. Kohl just announced his support. We also picked up Sen. Tom Harkin (D-IA), bringing us to the 10 we need in committee before the hearings even start, and 22 overall -- over one-third of the way to the 60 we need to break a filibuster.
Letter by letter, phone call by phone call, Senator by Senator, we will get to equal protection under the law. Is your Senator next? Will you help?
Update. The latest same-sex marriage trendline from Nate Silver: