USA, Indiana: House Speaker Moves Marriage Equality Ban to Second Committee

Written by scott on January 22nd, 2014

Indiana House Speaker Brian BosmaAfter running into problems pushing thru a gay marriage ban in one House committee, the House speaker has picked it up and dropped it into another, more receptive one.

The Indianapolis Star reports:

Indiana House Speaker Brian Bosma pledged to treat a proposed constitutional ban on same-sex marriage like any other bill this year. But critics say that vow fell away on Tuesday when he yanked the measure out of a committee where it seemed doomed to fail and sent it to one where it’s all but certain to pass. The highly unusual move means the proposed constitutional amendment is almost certain to get a vote on the House floor. It also reveals just how quickly positions are shifting on the issue — especially among Republicans.

A few weeks ago, no one would have anticipated that the measure would have had any trouble getting out of the House Judiciary Committee, where Bosma initially assigned it. But last week, three GOP committee members surprised many observers — including, apparently, Bosma — with reservations about the amendment. That left Bosma with few options. He could let the measure die and risk angering conservatives who want an opportunity to vote on the issue. Or, he could use his powers as speaker to push the measure through at the risk of seeming desperate or heavy handed. He chose the latter.

Bigotry truly knows no bounds. What other tricks and sleight-of-hand will be needed to get this thing passed?

The Indiana Star’s Matthew Tully says the ban is just wrong:

The biggest problem is that it is wrong to judge our fellow citizens in a public vote, a vote that would allow some Hoosiers to tell others that they deserve less. Less respect. Less freedom. Less opportunity. This amendment is so disturbingly wrong, so morally offensive, so out of step with where our nation is, that it’s hard to believe its advocates continue to persist. The idea that our political leaders are calling for a public referendum to make clear in the constitution that some of our neighbors are second-class citizens — well, it’s stomach-turning.

And the Indy Star also reports on Arts Groups that are stepping up to oppose the ban.

On Jan. 20, the Indianapolis Museum of Art announced its opposition to HJR-3, a bill that would amend the state constitution to include a definition of marriages as being between a man and woman. The Indianapolis Consortium of Arts Administrators, a group comprised of 52 arts organizations in the city, is expected to discuss a document on the matter drafted by David Lawrence, Arts Council of Indianapolis president and CEO, during its monthly meeting Jan. 22. “Clearly we’re going to oppose HJR-3,” said Lawrence, who declined to discuss specific details of the document. The consortium includes a wide range of performing arts, educational, and historic preservation organizations large and small.

It’s great to see so many folks standing up for LGBT rights and marriage equality.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Indiana.


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