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    November 03, 2006

    Two depressing predictions come true

    Posted by: Chris

    I wish either one of these had turned out differently:

    1.    Just yesterday, discussing the prospects that New Jersey's Legislature might adopt full marriage rights, I wrote:

    A Zogby poll commissioned by Garden State Equality showed a majority already favoring
    marriage equality, 56 to 39 percent. Two big caveats, however: The poll was taken before the Supreme Court opinion, which might have crystallized opposition to marriage among some, and because it was commissined by the gay rights group, the question was no doubt worded to elicit the highest possible positive response.

    Now this morning comes this from the Philadelphia Inquirer:

    Support for banning same-sex marriage in New Jersey grew in the days after the state Supreme Court ruled that gay couples should have the same rights as married heterosexuals, according to a poll released yesterday. A little more than half of the Rutgers-Eagleton poll's 809 respondents favored changing the state constitution so that gay marriages would be banned. In June, a poll showed the opposite, with a little more than half opposing such a constitutional amendment.

    The news from New Jersey isn't all bad, however. The same Rutgers-Eagleton poll still showed most people (54 to 37 percent) agreed with the court ruling, and most still favor civil unions (40 percent) or even full marriage (29 percent) over overturning the ruling (16 percent). Since support for a constitutional amendment banning gays from marrying topped 54 percent though the court didn't even require it, we can only imagine the straits we'd been in if the court ruling had been right on the law.

    2.    A week ago, I wrote about how the House Ethics Committee investigation into Foley-gate actually provided those involved with a convenient way to hide the crucial facts from voters until after Election Day:

    Because the whole Foley matter is "under investigation," all these principle players have lawyered up and clammed up, in classic Washington style.  Meanwhile, there is an election in two weeks which ought to allow the American public to pass judgment on all 435 members of the House on this and many other issues.  But no one expects the House panel to reach any official conclusions by then.

    Now this from today's Washington Post:

    The House ethics committee has been working hard to determine whether Republicans covered up Mark Foley's electronic messages to male former pages, but even 12-hour workdays will not bring conclusions by Election Day. The lack of a report by Tuesday leaves voters to sort through conflicting Republican accounts in deciding whether GOP leaders did not protect the teenage pages.

    The committee should be pressed to release the testimony, even if a report isn't ready, or those who testified should come forward with what they said. Otherwise, the phony Washington investigation game will once again have obscured the truth from voters, rather than clarified it — just like those damning investigations into pre-war intelligence about Saddam Hussein released after President Bush was safely re-elected.



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