Gay marriage: A political wedge? | Arkansas Blog

Friday, May 16, 2008

Gay marriage: A political wedge?

Posted By on Fri, May 16, 2008 at 6:49 AM

NY Times analysis describes presidential candidates of like mind on gay marriage and says McCain won't make an issue of it. Hmmm.

Interesting is the thought, among some Republicans, that the issue isn't as potent as sometimes supposed. There are undoubtedly localized exceptions to that. Still ...

There is considerable debate whether the marriage issue helped Republican candidates in 2004. And it seems questionable if voters are going to find it compelling this year, at a time when the country is facing a prolonged war, an ailing economy and skyrocketing gasoline prices, the issues that Mr. McCain and the two Democratic candidates are confronting on the campaign trail every day.

“At best, it doesn’t move voters, and at worst for Republicans, it moves them against them,” said Matthew Dowd, who was chief strategist for Mr. Bush’s campaign in 2004. “Not so much on the issue, but it becomes, ‘Why are we having a discussion on this issue when we should talking about things that matter, like the economy, or health care, or the war?’ ”

And there's this ouch-inducing quote in reaction coverage:

Ellen Pontac, who had driven to San Francisco from Davis, about 70 miles northeast, with her partner, Shelly Bailes, to witness the decision, said she was thrilled, but still not totally satisfied.

“This is what should happen, it’s so simple, so clear,” she said. “I used to say that all I want is the same rights that a 14-year-old girl in Arkansas has. We can’t have them federally. But we will.”


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