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  • « The Pinocchio's on "Meet the Press" | Main | Another marriage stonewall in D.C. »

    June 15, 2008

    Wake up and smell the wedge

    Posted by: Chris


    One of the key reasons why Log Cabin Republicans are looking past John McCain's long and extensive record of opposition to any and all forms of gay civil rights is the gay GOP group's belief that, "Sen. McCain isn’t going to use gay people as a wedge issue."

    The general election is in its very early days, of course, and already this week the presumptive Republican nominee is already failing to chin even that extremely low bar:

    Appearing at a campaign rally in Tennessee, John McCain was met with sustained cheers after stating that he believes "in the sanctity and unique status of marriage between man and woman."

    As the cheers began, McCain added "That's what I believe, that's what I support, and that's what I will fight for."

    The point here isn't simply that McCain opposes gay marriage; Barack Obama does as well. The point is that the Republican is using marriage as a wedge issue with conservatives, even in a place like Tennessee that already has a state constitutional amendment banning gay marriage. What more support could McCain offer to these voters but a federal marriage amendment?

    The political reality for any not wearing partisan blinders is that McCain will use whatever leverage he has to win, especially given the unpopularity of his party and his president, not to mention the tanking economy and the unpopular war.

    Log Cabin endorses McCain at its own peril, as talk like this is sure to be repeated, along with aggressive use of gay marriage as a wedge issue by the Republican National Committee and conservative 527s.

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    Comments

    1. Lucrece on Jun 15, 2008 2:37:26 PM:

      Hmmm, you talk about the LCR as if it still possessed any credibility beyond hard-faced gay Republicans.

      The LCR is well aware of these issues; they just haven't tired of putting out rather bad lies. Personally? I'm delighted. Let them fade into oblivion as the joke of an organization it has always been.

    1. Hawyer on Jun 15, 2008 2:46:59 PM:

      In 1965, when the buffed and studly Annappolis grad Bob McCain married the fashion model Carol Shepp, they were the perfect union of sanctified man and woman. During his famously publicized five and a half years imprisonment by the North Vietnamese (1967-1973), poor Carol was involved in a near-fatal car crash which badly disfigured her face. Upon his release, their relationship was distant and estranged. Many blamed McCain for his inability to accept Carol's diminished appearance. Indeed, he has publicly cited his adjustment problems as part and parcel to their marital failure.

      Finally in 1979, McCain launched into a flagrant extra-marital affair with Phoenix beer heiress Cindy Lou Hensley. John and Carol were soon after divorced.

      When John and Cindy were married in 1980, it was more business deal than sanctity. The mega-monied Hensley negotiated a prenuptial agreement with the tapped-out McCain - including the complete separation of their finances and filing of separate tax returns.

      Indeed, the McCain-Hensley union has been far from sanctimonious. Three Arizona reporters, on the condition of anonymity, recently related an anecdote from McCain's 1992 Senate bid, where he was joined on the trail by Cindy and several aides. At one point, Cindy playfully twirled McCain's hair and said, "You're getting a little thin up there." McCain's face reddened, and he responded, "At least I don't plaster on the makeup like a trollop, you cunt." McCain's excuse was that it had been a long day.

      Presumablly, if elected president of the United States, McCain would have many long days.

      So when McCain reiterated the dogeared Rovian mantra about the sanctity of marriage between a man and a woman, the reaction from the the white middle class Mid-South was unambiguous: unrestrained whooping and high-fiving - as though the overarching peril of gay marriage overshadowed the misadventurism in Iraq, the tanking dollar, the collapse of the middle class, the price of gas - ad infinitum.

      That the hypocrisy is suffocating seems entirely beside the point. Clearly the gay marriage flying wedge still has mileage. Just ask Bubba and Brenda of Nashville Tennessee.

      (Oh wait - they're busy watching NASCAR this weekend.)

    1. Hawyer on Jun 15, 2008 6:58:28 PM:

      ---Sorry about the typo above. I know McCain's first name is JOHN .. and not BOB (LOL)

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