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Thursday, June 08, 2006

Senate blocks ban on Gay Marriage

From one of my favorite blogs yesterday. I concur.

The Senate today blocked a vote on the Family Marriage Amendment (FMA) by a vote of 49-48 just as it did in 2004. Seven Republicans joined Democratic opponents in voting against a cloture vote, which would have ended debate and permitted the proposed constitutional amendment to be voted on by the full Senate. Republican Sens. John McCain, Susan Collins, Olympia Snowe, Judd Gregg, Arlen Specter, Lincoln Chafee and John Sununu all voted against the cloture vote. Only two Democrats, Sens. Ben Nelson and Robert Byrd, cast a vote in support of the amendment.

During the debate, an interesting exchange took place between Sen. Edward Kennedy, an opponent of the amendment, and Sen. Orrin Hatch, a proponent of the amendment. The AP reports:


"The Republican leadership is asking us to spend time writing bigotry into the Constitution," said Sen. Edward Kennedy of Massachusetts, which legalized gay marriage in 2003. "A vote for it is a vote against civil unions, against domestic partnership, against all other efforts for states to treat gays and lesbians fairly under the law."

In response, Hatch fumed: "Does he really want to suggest that over half of the United States Senate is a crew of bigots?"


That's exactly what Sen. Kennedy meant Sen. Hatch. Anyone who would support writing discrimination into the Constitution against any group of Americans is obviously exhibiting bigotry towards the affected group of Americans. Indiana's Senator Richard Lugar chose to side with the bigots, while Sen. Evan Bayh, at least on this vote, sided with supporters of equality.


Byrd's vote doesn't surprise me. What do you expect from a guy who was a practicing Grand Wizard of the KKK and who objected to a visually impaired congressional aide bringing her guide dog onto the Senate floor? Rest in peace Beau.

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