The brief tempest in a teapot over New Jersey Governor Chris Christie’s harsh words for the House GOP in the wake of its refusal to provide disaster funding for his state has, thankfully, blown over. This sort of GOP apostasy, while pure catnip to the Village, doesn’t amount to a hill of beans in the real world, and is newsworthy only because such behavior is so drearily common.
|By: Peterr Saturday November 17, 2012 9:06 am|
The US Conference of Catholic Bishops held their annual November meeting this past week, and coming a week after the elections, it had to have been rough. The bishops lost four out of four state votes on marriage equality, and the prospects for rolling back the Affordable Care Act and advancing their other policy prescriptions dimmed greatly with Obama’s reelection and the failure of the GOP to take control of the Senate. It was not a good week for the bishops, and like all people in politics who came out on the short end of things, a little stock taking was in order. What went wrong, and how can we do better next time?
Their answer: bad messaging. “If only we were better at explaining things . . .” Right. And Todd Akin lost not because he was a man firmly on a mission to return us to the 18th century, but because he was inarticulate.
News flash for the USCCB: It’s not that the voters don’t understand you; it’s that they don’t agree with you.
|By: David Dayen Thursday October 18, 2012 12:00 pm|
A three-judge panel of the Second Circuit Court of Appeals has struck down the Defense of Marriage Act, upholding lower-court rulings that found the law, which discriminates against the marriage rights of gays and lesbians, unconstitutional. The author of the opinion, Dennis Jacobs, is a very conservative George H.W. Bush appointee. But even he had to acknowledge the nature of the case, ruling that discrimination of LGBT individuals deserves heightened scrutiny, and that therefore a federal law which discriminates against them must be treated skeptically.
|By: Attaturk Friday October 5, 2012 1:30 am|
In late 2009 the Iowa Supreme Court gave impetus to a growing and inevitable trend, same sex marriage, by finding it a constitutional right.
A year later, in a non-presidential election year, the Christian Right was able to use the traditional lower turn out in such elections to toss out three of the nine judges who issued the ruling.
|By: David Dayen Friday September 28, 2012 1:00 pm|
The Department of Homeland Security today announced a change to immigration rules, saying that they would consider same-sex couples as “family relationships” for the purposes of immigration policy. Specifically, the written guidance reads, “In an effort to make clear the definition of the phrase ‘family relationships,’ I have directed ICE to disseminate written guidance to the field that the interpretation of the phrase ‘family relationships’ includes long-term, same-sex partners.” This means that same-sex couples in binational relationships would have their coupling considered as part of any immigration proceedings. There are roughly 36,000 such couples today.
|By: David Dayen Tuesday July 31, 2012 4:33 pm|
The renewal of the Violence Against Women Act got caught up earlier this year in a partisan controversy. Republicans objected to provisions that would have expanded the anti-domestic violence protections to tribal land, undocumented immigrants and same-sex couples. Both the House and Senate passed versions of the bill that catered to their respective bases. And there didn’t seem to be much hope for a reconciliation of the various differences. Joe Biden and Dems came out strongly today for their expanded version.
|By: David Dayen Thursday May 31, 2012 8:37 am|
The 1st Circuit Court of Appeals in Boston has affirmed a ruling declaring the Defense of Marriage Act unconstitutional, bringing the case one step closer to an ultimate resolution at the Supreme Court.
|By: David Dayen Wednesday May 16, 2012 1:15 pm|
Today the House votes on reauthorizing the Violence Against Women Act. A version already passed the Senate with 68 votes, but the House version cancelled several protections Senate Democrats added, to apply domestic violence protections to Native Americans, undocumented immigrants and LGBT families. This has drawn a veto threat from the White House. Here’s their statement.
|By: David Dayen Monday May 14, 2012 2:50 pm|
Since Obama’s same-sex marriage announcement last week, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer and Illinois Governor Pat Quinn have all endorsed marriage equality. But perhaps the most interesting angle came from South Carolina Representative James Clyburn, who had managed to get to May 2012 without ever expressing an opinion on marriage equality; he not only endorsed it, but leapfrogged Obama by rejecting the President’s state’s rights approach to the issue.