Sunday, February 29, 2004

Senator Williamson "Pleads" with Henry over Gay Marriage

The Tulsa World reports that Senator James Williamson, the Republican leader in the state senate has written a letter to Governor Henry asking the Democratic Gov to help him get a proposed (by Williamson) constitutional amendment on defining marriage as only for heterosexuals out of a Senate Committee. According to the World story, "Williamson expressed confidence that Henry's 'active and skillful lobbying of the Democratic caucus' could deliver the needed votes." Of course Williamson distributed his letter to Henry to the press. Williamson's move is akin to an estranged husband writing a letter to the wife (er, significant other) from whom he is separated and distributing copies to her relatives. The hope of course, is to either encourage her relatives to talk her into returning to him or, failing that, exculpate himself of blame for the failure of the marriage.

Williamson is on the same strategic path as Bush was setting out on when he called for a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage. Even if the effort fails Williamson and Bush can claim they tried to get Johnny to quit marrying Bobby. In both cases their Republican colleagues as well as Democrats just want the whole thing to go away - quietly.

There's always some politician willing to throw a big emotional moral issue into the political debate and divert energy away from economic development, jobs, etc - things we can all agree on.

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