Skip to main content

Rob McKenna: "I work for NOM."
The final language for the referendum on marriage equality that opponents will use to try to place on the ballot this fall has been released. From Washington Secretary of State website:
Ballot Title
The legislature passed Engrossed Substitute Senate Bill 6239 concerning marriage for same-sex couples, modified domestic-partnership law, and religious freedom, and voters have filed a sufficient referendum petition on this bill. [10 words]

This bill would allow same-sex couples to marry, preserve domestic partnerships only for seniors, and preserve the right of clergy or religious organizations to refuse to perform, recognize, or accommodate any marriage ceremony. [30 words]

Ballot Measure Summary
This bill allows same-sex couples to marry, applies marriage laws without regard to gender, and specifies that laws using gender-specific terms like husband and wife include same-sex spouses. After 2014, existing domestic partnerships are converted to marriages, except for seniors. It preserves the right of clergy or religious organizations to refuse to perform or recognize any marriage or accommodate wedding ceremonies. The bill does not affect licensing of religious organizations providing adoption, foster-care, or child-placement. [75 words]

Though it's a drag this fight must be fought, this does represent something of a win for marriage equality side. The Republican State Attorney General Rob McKenna had attempted to slip some anti-equality talking points into the ballot langauge.

This was State Attorney McKenna's proposed language:

Ballot Measure Summary
The bill would redefine marriage to allow same-sex couples to marry, apply marriage eligibility requirements without regard to gender, and specify that laws using gender-specific terms like “husband” and “wife” include same-sex spouses. Clergy could refuse to solemnize or recognize any marriages. Religious organizations and religiously affiliated educational institutions could refuse to accommodate weddings. The measure would not affect licensing of religious organizations providing adoption, foster-care, or child-placement. Domestic partnerships for seniors would be preserved.
The use of the phrase "redefine marriage" is lifted directly from National Organization for Marriage's list of most effective talking points for undermining marriage equality support:
I. THE MOST EFFECTIVE SINGLE SENTENCE:

Extensive and repeated polling agrees that the single most effective message is:

"Gays and Lesbians have a right to live as they choose, they don’t have the right to redefine marriage for all of us."

It was unseemly for McKenna to try use his office to rig the process in such a manner. It didn't escape the notice of local politicos who publicly shamed the gubernatorial aspirant for putting his personal views before his professional responsibilities, saying "he's smart enough to know better."

The Attorney General's language was challenged in court and today, fortunately the judge saw through McKenna's underhanded trick and agreed with Washington United for Marriage that the offensive language should be struck from the petition.

There has been a "decline to sign" campaign kicked off, however the bar for reaching a ballot referendum is not particularly high in Washington, and the measure is expected to make it to the ballot.

Democrats in Washington state will very likely be fighting to defend their historic achievement and preserve Governor Gregoire's departing legacy. The coalition of Washington United for Marriage is asking folks to pledge their yes vote here.

Originally posted to Milk Men And Women on Tue Mar 13, 2012 at 05:15 PM PDT.

Also republished by LGBT Kos Community.

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site