To the Windmills! Not long after the US Supreme Court ruled that the federal Defense of Marriage Act was, in part, unconstitutional, the Republicans began moaning, whining and kvetching. What is more, they are preparing a Federal Marriage Amendment- most noteably Representative Tim Huelskamp is preparing one.
To say that Don Quixote had a better shot of taking down a windmill than the GOP has of getting a marriage amendment through Congress let alone the nation is a profound understatement. In order to get it through, it needs a 3/5ths majority in both the House and the Senate, and a 3/4ths majority of the states. As of today, there are 13 states that have same-sex marriage and another five that have civil unions. The GOP does not have a super majority in either chamber.
Here is the wailing and gnashing of feet out of the GOP after the ruling:
While Huelskamp is right “This would trump the Supreme Court,” the bill has no sponsors, and has little prospects of surviving to a vote in the states. In July 2006, the last time a bill was put forward to amend the Constitution to ban same-sex marriage, it failed 236 to 187. It needs 290 to pass.
Huelskamp offered up a baffling bit of logic as to why he thinks the Amendment would pass saying “A majority of Americans don’t like President Obama as president, but he’s still the president. What did not happen is what the court and then the folks pushing for [DOMA repeal] hoped would happen: that it would end the debate. The debate is not over.” He was asked why he thought that lawmakers would embrace his amendment. He did not answer the question.
He was, though, glad that the Courts didn’t, you know, exceed their mandates and strike all of DOMA and all bans on same-sex marriage down despite the fact that neither of the cases even sought that. He said of the rulings “It’s very tortured legal logic. Today, 37 states still have traditional marriage amendments and laws. Those are not overruled, which is the good side of this.”
Of course, he appears to have been just paying attention to FOX News instead of, say, LezGetReal or MSNBC where we’ve been reporting that Nevada has begun the process of striking down their same-sex marriage ban. Michigan lawmakers are setting up to do the same. Groups in Florida and Arizona are possibly going to push amendments to overturn their bans in the next year or so.
On one thing we agree, “It’s not over.” The problem is, Huelskamp seems to be ignoring the diva warming up in the wings.