Bloggers react to state-court rulings knocking down gay marriage and wag a finger at Sen. Joseph Lieberman for potentially turning on the Democratic Party. Meanwhile, bloggers with manners are wishing George W. Bush a happy birthday.
Left at the altar: The New York State Court of Appeals ruled Thursday that the state constitution does not "compel recognition of marriages between members of the same sex" and concluded that the issue should be addressed by the state legislature. Meanwhile, the Georgia Supreme Court upheld the state's gay marriage ban, overturning a lower-court decision that voided a measure passed by voters banning same-sex marriage and civil unions.
Wisconsin law blogger Ann Althouse, a supporter of gay marriage, is nonetheless pleased with the New York decision. "The more courts find a constitutional right here, the more they inspire the movement to amend constitutions and carve a ban in stone," she argues. "This is an issue that needs to be worked through the political system over time to reach a stable conclusion. I appreciate the arguments that have been made for same-sex marriage as a constitutional right, but these arguments work well -- work better -- in the political arena." And Terrance Heath, who bills himself as a "Black. Gay. Father. Vegetarian. Buddhist. Liberal." at the Republic of T., agrees. "This may not be a bad thing. As I pointed out earlier, sometimes state legislatures decide in our favor, as was the case in California. I've noted before that polls show the tide of public opinion is turning in favor of marriage equality, with a greater number of Americans supporting either same-sex marriage or civil unions," he writes.
Dave Wissing at the pro-Republican Hedgehog Report similarly contends that New York sent gay-marriage activists back where they should have started. "[B]y attempting to force gay marriage into law through the courts instead of the legislature, I'd wager the pro-gay marriage lobby has probably done more damage to their cause because it has led to numerous states passing Constitutional Amendments banning gay marriage in response to combat the political ramifications of the judicial decisions. They would have been better off trying to elect those people who would help change the law into their favor."
But Reason magazine editor Nick Gillespie points out at Hit and Run that legislating gay marriage could take lifetimes. "It's easy to counsel gays who want to get hitched to hurry up and wait if you're not gay, or to sign on to a status quo social contract that gives you the shit end of the stick if you're not gay. Which is not to say the courts should be deciding all manner of social policy; it's just to raise a point inspired by the judge's refusal to predict what future generations will think down the line," he writes.
"At least the New York Supremes left open the option that the legislature could change the law in the future," concedes "suburban housewife gone bad" Kathy at Birmingham Blues. "Georgia has enshrined its bigotry in the state constitution, just as Alabama did last month. I have to believe that our citizens will look back in horror at this mess a generation or two in the future."
Read more on gay marriage here.
Lieberman disloyal? Sen. Joseph Lieberman announced Monday that he will petition to run for Senate as an independent if he loses the Democratic nomination to cable magnate Ned Lamont during the Connecticut primary in August.
"This isn't the first time Joe Lieberman's placed loyalty to his career above all other allegiances," contends Paul Loeb at the liberal group blog Daily Kos. He adds this dollop of sarcasm: "Lieberman made a similar choice in the 2000 election. He hedged his bets then as well, by running for reelection as Connecticut Senator while also running for Vice President. It sent a great message of confidence for the ticket he was part of."
Media "maven" Andrew Kaza at Kazablog predicts the action in Thursday night's C-SPAN debate between Lieberman and Lamont. "Watch Joe squirm. Watch Joe perspire. …Watch the sad demise of a Senator who once had some Democratic principles but is now recognizes that abandonment of those ideals may cost him his job," Kaza writes.
Bloggers are having a dandy time parsing out which Democratic senators are supporting Lieberman and which ones will endorse whoever gets the nomination. The Daily Kos, which endorses Lamont, maintains a running tally. "We're reaching a point in which every Dem senator is going to be pressured to commit to one or the other. If Lieberman beats Lamont next month, none of this matters. If Lamont wins, and more senators join Salazar, Pryor, and Nelson in bucking the party's nominee, it's going to get ugly," writes Democratic consultant Steve Benen at the Carpetbagger Report.
Happy Birthday, Mr. President: Today is President Bush's 60th birthday and the blogosphere is not short on salutations.
Wisco at the Griper Blade proposes that the public send donations to organizations such as the ACLU and Planned Parenthood in lieu of gifts. The conservative Iceman Cometh at the Iceman Bloggeth has a simple message for W.: "A grateful nation applauds your leadership and wishes you a happy 60th birthday." D.C. gossip blog Wonkette critiques the media coverage.