For 2009, it would seem that same-sex marriage will be one of the most heated topics of this year. It was a heated topic and debate back in 2008. This is something that has brought forth much political and religious fallout. This was one heated topic in California. One should remember the heated Proposition 8 campaign.
At a speech to the Log Cabin Republicans, GOP strategist and former campaign manager to GOP Senator John McCain of Arizona during the 2008 US Presidential Election, Steve Schmidt gave warning to the GOP that it could not become the “Religious Party.” He said that the GOP needs to be a bit more liberal such as accepting gay marriage. This issue is becoming quite the political storm.
So far Iowa, Vermont, Connecticut, and Massachusetts have legalized gay marriage. This battle could head over to New York in the near future according to an article on the Nashua Telegraph. Now, New Hampshire could possibly join those states as the fifth state that has pass a bill to legalize gay marriage.
After two days of private meetings, the bill to legalize bay marriage has passed. Under HB 436, traditional religious and civil marriages are affirmed. However, same-sex couples have the freedom of picking what type of marriage they want.
Now, it has to go onto the governor’s desk. While Democratic Governor John Lynch is against same-sex marriage, there is no indication on whether or not he will sign or veto. We will have to find out once the bill arrives onto his table. Should this be signed into law, it will be effective starting January 1 of next year. By 2011, civil unions would become marriages. Will same-sex marriage be legalized in New Hampshire soon? We will have to find out.
It passed by 13-11. All except one that opposed are Republicans. So far, this bill seems to have sparked anger amongst Republicans in the NH State Senate. In short, this is the battle between “equality” and “sanctity of traditional marriage.” With this respect, New Hampshire should be a state to pay very close attention to.
An article on Philly.com touches up on the aspect. Those that oppose the bill complain that it will put the root of human civilization in danger. They also insist that it is a “sacred religious institution.” This battle could also carry over to New York and New Jersey soon.
GOP Senator Robert Letourneau of Derry has given the implication that the purpose of marriage is to have children. He gave the age old argument of only a male and female together can produce children.
In another article on Edge Boston, gay rights activists are praising the bill. So far, what is going on is possible proof that gay marriage could be widely legalized in the Northeast United States. In turn, the battle for or against same-sex marriage could possibly transition from California to the northeast United States. In the case of Illinois, there is the talk of the legalization of civil unions for same-sex couples.
In regards to the Northeast, this could possibly help empower Democrats as those states are known Democratic strongholds. This has been acknowledged by GOP Governors at the GOP Governors Association meeting back in November of 2008. It was about one week after then Democratic Senator from Illinois Barack Obama won the United States Presidency. At the meeting GOP Governor Tim Pawlenty of Minnesota explained that the GOP cannot essentially compete in the Northeast United States. He added that the GOP really cannot compete on the West Coast.
In a somewhat related story also taking place in New Hampshire, the State Senate unanimously voted 24-0 to do away with a bill that bans the discrimination of transgender people. This is infamously dubbed as the “bathroom bill.”