Our friend Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council, took note of Gov. Corbett’s recent decision to drop the case of defending Pennsylvania’s marriage law that states that marriage is between one man and one woman. Yep, there went our 18-year-old amended marriage statute and more than 200 years of law. With one bad opinion by one activist federal judge (Judge John Jones) and one bad (and puzzling?) decision NOT to appeal by the governor of Pennsylvania.
We all know that marriage is not a partisan issue; it’s more important than that. But my hat’s off to FRC for their insights on this from a national perspective. It’s worth a read:
Three years ago, Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett (R) took an oath to “discharge the duties of my office with fidelity.” Yesterday, he abandoned his oath when he refused to appeal a lawless court ruling imposing a redefinition of marriage on the state of Pennsylvania. He is following the lead of both the Pennsylvania attorney general and the U.S. attorney general in showing contempt for self-governance and the right of citizens to decide the fate of marriage. “The court has spoken,” explained Governor Corbett. His reasoning is enough to make one wonder why even bother to have legislative and executive branches? If Governor Corbett can pick and choose which laws to defend, is it time for everyone else to pick and choose which laws they want to follow?
Media reports suggest that the governor’s decision not to appeal was motivated by his desire to expand his support among Democratic voters. However, polling consistently shows that Republican voters are overwhelming in support of natural marriage and it remains critical to deciding their vote.
Playing both sides of the marriage debate is a losing campaign strategy and will only succeed in depressing voter turnout among Republican voters. Last month, FRC commissioned a survey that found 82 percent of Republican and Republican-leaning independents believe marriage “should be defined only as a union between one man and one woman” — a statement with which 74 percent strongly agreed. Yesterday, a Gallup survey found that just 30 percent of Republican voters support “legal same-sex marriage.” Hot Air blog pointed out that support for redefining marriage is “just barely higher than it was three years ago” despite the recent string of court rulings.
The reality is that these issues are non-negotiable to the base of the party. The Nevada Republican Party found this out the hard way after its party leaders removed the life and marriage planks from their platform. The plank stripping stunned Republicans around the country and caused many within the party to pull back from giving consideration to Las Vegas as the host site for the 2016 Republican National Convention. Today, the RNC announced that Las Vegas is no longer on the short list of possible host cities. Republicans like Governor Tom Corbett can continue to rip up these planks but they will only succeed in building the GOP a boardwalk to a permanent minority.