SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax      Advertise Here      Mobile Version     Exclusive Subscriber Content     Updated Posts    Contact
CapitolFax.com
To subscribe to Capitol Fax, click here.
Boo the opposition, not your friends

Friday, Jun 28, 2013

* My Sun-Times column

If you’re heading to the Pride Parade this weekend, you might be tempted to boo some of the state politicians who’ll be marching.

If you want to boo them for screwing up the state’s finances, then go right ahead.

But don’t jeer because the marriage equality bill failed to pass the General Assembly.

First of all, the people who stopped the marriage bill won’t even be at the parade, let alone marching in it. The politicians marching in front of you on Sunday are on your side. They support marriage equality or they wouldn’t be there.

The Illinois Senate passed the gay marriage bill by a wide margin back in February, so there’s no need to boo any marching state senators. The bill came up short in the House, and while mistakes were surely made, those to blame are the state representatives who opposed the bill, not the people who supported it.

And don’t buy into the bizarre hype that the bill might’ve passed had it been called for a vote in the House. It wasn’t gonna happen. The roll call was going the other way fast by the end of the spring session.

There are just so many rumors about this bill. Almost none of them are true, and most have been spread by well-intentioned folks with little to no experience differentiating idle Statehouse gossip from fact.

For instance, the rumor mill was rampant about a vote occurring on May 30, the day before the session ended. But the truth is that the bill lost crucial momentum a few days before when it became known that a prominent House Republican who’d been leaning toward voting “Yes” had switched to a firm “No.” It was the first time that the supporters publicly lost a backer, but it wouldn’t be the last.

The groups supporting the marriage bill hadn’t bothered to do any real ground work in African-American districts, so some initially sympathetic black legislators found themselves targets of a ferocious and well-funded counterattack from their churches. The pro-marriage equality groups didn’t even hire any House-affiliated black lobbyists until the last two days, but by then it was just way too late.

Look, plenty of mistakes were made on this bill. But nobody made those mistakes out of malice.

The attacks on the bill’s House sponsor, state Rep. Greg Harris, are particularly out of line. Nobody, and I mean nobody, wanted that bill to pass more than Harris did. He is widely respected as a competent legislator. But the Statehouse game is a lot like baseball. No one has a perfect batting average.

House Speaker Michael Madigan made some crucial errors, for sure. The vote probably should’ve been held much earlier in the session, before the opposition ramped up. But an honest person cannot tell you for sure that it would’ve passed back then. And, besides, I kinda doubt Madigan will be at the parade.

Gov. Pat Quinn claimed in early May that the bill had enough votes to pass, but his headcount was discovered to be bogus. His was just another false rumor which ultimately helped poison the well. Despite his bungles, Quinn means well on this issue, too. No sense in booing him.

If you want to heckle somebody, then pile some friends in a van and head to a parade in a House district represented by somebody who opposes gay marriage. That probably won’t do a lot of good, either, but at least the anger will be properly focused.

* Meanwhile, Senate President John Cullerton wants people to know that he’s not the problem

State Senate President John Cullerton (D-Chicago) told the Sun-Times on Thursday that he was willing to call same-sex marriage for a vote — for a second time — if that meant it would boost momentum in the Illinois House.

“Inaction is in the House,” he said when asked whether the Supreme Court’s landmark ruling would spur action in Springfield. The state Senate passed same-sex marriage on Valentine’s Day. But the House adjourned on May 31 without calling the measure for a vote.

`”I am working with the House sponsor to see if there’s anything that I can do,” Cullerton told the Sun-Times, who caught up with the lawmaker after a City Club of Chicago luncheon where David Axelrod headlined. “If they want us to repass the bill which would require another vote in the Senate with a changed effective date. If that would help, we’d be more than happy to try to do that.” […]

“Usually the second chamber, it’s easier to vote for a bill because your senator has already voted for it. A lot of people have said we’ll wait to see what the U.S. Supreme Court, well they’ve acted. This is such an inevitability, figure it out guys. Let’s get this done.”

* New York Times

Gay rights groups say they think the votes are there for a win at a brief legislative session this fall.

Maybe. Maybe sooner. Maybe later. But I still don’t think that this thing will get a vote in the veto session, which would be during the candidate filing process.

* Related…

* Mark Brown: Illinois needs to finish what Supreme Court started: What was really going on was that Republican strategists had identified the threat of gay marriage as a wedge issue that could be used to motivate conservative voters to come out more strongly in that November’s national election. Democrats meekly went along to blunt the impact. The Illinois bill’s chief sponsor, a young state senator named Peter Fitzgerald, went so far as to close the debate with a story about a third-grade boy adopted by two gay men. “Every day this boy is dropped off at school by his parents, and the other kids make fun of him. And he’s constantly crying. He’s in the principal’s office. He’s constantly fighting,” Fitzgerald said disapprovingly, offering his story as an argument in favor of further discrimination against gay couples. How wonderful then that the Supreme Court observed quite the opposite in the impact of the Defense of Marriage Act.

* Durbin was for DOMA before he was against it

* Caprio: Congress must decide federal benefits for homosexual couples

- Posted by Rich Miller        


15 Comments
  1. - Cincinnatus - Friday, Jun 28, 13 @ 9:01 am:

    Procedural question: If the House were to approve the bill, would the Senate have to vote again because of some change in the effective date, or would the bill move directly to the Governor after a House vote?


  2. - DanL60 - Friday, Jun 28, 13 @ 9:39 am:

    “Mike Madigan” and “crucial errors” in the same sentence are pretty rare.


  3. - wordslinger - Friday, Jun 28, 13 @ 9:47 am:

    What a weekend for parades. Downtown is packed right now. Raise your Cups!

    There’s plenty to celebrate in the next parade, too, thanks to Justice Kennedy.

    Enjoy that with your friends, and then get back to work on the House. The path might be long and frustrating, but the goal is assured.


  4. - Big Et - Friday, Jun 28, 13 @ 9:58 am:

    Wish I knew why my comment got bounced, I followed all the rules for newbies. I guess it was just an improper viewpoint.


  5. - Rich Miller - Friday, Jun 28, 13 @ 10:01 am:

    ===I guess it was just an improper viewpoint. ===

    Nope.


  6. - LincolnLounger - Friday, Jun 28, 13 @ 10:11 am:

    Thanks for the reminder of why I am glad Peter Fitzgerald was a coward who didn’t run for re-election and moved out of state.


  7. - Esquire - Friday, Jun 28, 13 @ 10:59 am:

    No real surprise to find US Senator Dick Durbin doing a one hundred and eighty degree turn. He has done the same on other issues and positions throughout his lengthy and mercurial political career.


  8. - Anon - Friday, Jun 28, 13 @ 11:57 am:

    Just once I wish the media and bloggers would offer credence to the fact that the Harris bill, as currently drafted, offers NO religious freedoms to people outside of the church itself. No exemptions for parish centers, no exemptions for religious schools, no exemptions for Knight of Columbus Halls, no exemptions for private businesses like bed and breakfasts, photographers, or caterers, and no exemptions for judges or county clerks. They have rights too that should be protected.


  9. - just sayin' - Friday, Jun 28, 13 @ 11:57 am:

    Quinn- the ONLY speaker to get booed at the Hawks Rally…


  10. - Rod - Friday, Jun 28, 13 @ 12:20 pm:

    Rich thanks for the supportive comments for Rep Harris, he is my representative and I have known him well before he became a member of the Assembly. Rep Harris’ district has a very significant gay, lesbian, and transgender community along with many straight community members who overwhelmingly support marriage equality.

    There is great frustration with the fact that the bill was not called and limited understanding of the tactical consideration Harris made based on his vote count.

    Among the more politically sophisticated community members there is very little criticism of his failure to call the bill. Among the many members of the community that have jumped on the marriage equality bandwagon in the last year and want a victory party there has been some criticism of Greg. I suspect there is also some frustration among divorce attorneys who are looking forward to new business opportunities.


  11. - FoxValleyPride1 - Friday, Jun 28, 13 @ 12:27 pm:

    I fully intend to walk shoulder to shoulder with Harris in this year’s Pride Parade. A few days ago, I too, would have expected to hear some boos from the crowd. And I’m not completely naive… I’m sure there will still be a few…. but as someone who watches this issue closely from inside the LGBTQ activist community, I can tell you that Wednesday’s SCOTUS decision has very abruptly changed the mood of the LGBTQ community, and more importantly, it’s changed the focus the community’s activist groups.

    Not long ago, I lamented that the LGBTQ activist community, by publicly putting on their “angry face” was being counter-productive. I argued that nobody was going to be persuaded to join up with people who call their opponents names like “bigot” (no matter how accurate those names may be.) I also said that threatening to hold LMadigan’s campaign hostage to her father’s actions was akin to holding a gun to their own head. Unfortunately, that “angry face” problem had to get worse before it got better.

    But it has gotten better. The focus has finally (and instantly) changed. The SCOTUS decision drew a bright red line between a Federally recognized “marriage” and a Federally unrecognized “civil union.” Legislators, like Stephanie Kifowit, who made once made the case that, while she believes in equality, she also thinks that civil unions have accomplished that, can no longer make any such case. With roughly 1,100 Federal benefits associated marriage, as Governor Quinn said, “Members of the Illinois House now have more than 1,100 new reasons to make marriage equality the law in Illinois.”

    The LGBTQ activist community has now been scrambling for ways to make their legislators aware of those NEW arguments - and that’s a very good thing. Those new arguments may change some minds. The whole poisoned strategy of trying to be united in finding someone to blame - that’s gone. At least for the time being, it’s gone. Hopefully, it’s gone for good.


  12. - Big Et - Friday, Jun 28, 13 @ 12:44 pm:

    Rich: pretty neat how you can appease a commenter by making it appear that their comment is posted, but only on their own device. Of course it is only right to delete posts you dont like, but to make the commenter think he was posted is dishonest. No need to ban me…I thought this was an honest place, but I’ll have to keep looking.


  13. - Just Me - Friday, Jun 28, 13 @ 12:55 pm:

    Hey Anon at 11:57 — all of the places you mention are places of public accommodation. If they want to be able to discriminate against certain people, then they shouldn’t be in a public accommodation business. If a government official doesn’t want to follow the law either, then they shouldn’t have run for office.


  14. - ChicagoR - Friday, Jun 28, 13 @ 1:01 pm:

    Anon, are there exceptions to the other civil rights laws for bed and breakfasts, photographers, or caterers who don’t want to serve blacks or hispanics due to a religious objection? Can clerks refuse to issue marriage licenses to our Jewish friends?


  15. - wordslinger - Friday, Jun 28, 13 @ 4:03 pm:

    Watched “Stonewall” again last night on “American Experience.”

    Extraordinary.

    There’s still work to do, but there always is. Celebrate how far we’ve come and keep going!


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


* We interrupt this break for a special announcement...
* Reader comments closed for the weekend
* Afternoon updates
* Stop the satellite TV tax!
* *** UPDATED 1x *** Twitter suspends parody account @peoriamayor
* Lesson learned: Don't 'Leave'
* Fitch affirms Illinois GO Bond rating
* BGA: Rauner firm holds state contracts; political round-up
* Question of the Day
* CAPTION CONTEST!
* Yesterday's blog posts

Support CapitolFax.com
Visit our advertisers...

...............

...............

...............

...............

...............

...............


Search This Blog...

Search the 98th General Assembly By Bill Number
(example: HB0001)

Search the 98th General Assembly By Keyword

          
        * Baldur’s Gate Enhanced Edition: first impressions on a revived classic
        * Hands On With Facebook's Nearby Friends
        * Our favourite 5 new Windows Phone apps of the week
        * Nike Layoffs Add Fuel to Apple iWatch Rumors
        * Nike Says The FuelBand Isn’t Dead, New Color Options Coming
        * Beats Music Gets In-App Subscriptions, Beefs Up Free Streaming Options
        * Nokia Lumia Instagramer of the Week: Sigrid Sohm

        * Five Best Text Editors
        * Writebox Is a Minimalistic Notepad That Syncs With Dropbox
        * Thin film electronics may hold the key to human size health care
        * Samsung Galaxy S5 Review
        * A 3D-Printed Ultrasound Cast That Looks Awesome and Heals You Faster
        * Beats Bites the Bullet, and Starts Selling Subscriptions From Apple’s App
        * Nike Fires Majority of FuelBand Team, Will Stop Making Wearable Hardware

        * Adam Eaton flirts with death, then strains hamstring
        * Prospect Johnson proving 2013 wasn't a fluke
        * Rangers 6, White Sox 3: Rallies stall to extend skid
        * Quintana, White Sox lose touch in rough fourth inning
        * Eaton exits game after collision with Fielder
        * Eaton exits game with mild hamstring strain
        * Paulino goes on DL with rotator cuff inflammation


        Main Menu
        Home
        Illinois
        YouTube
        Pundit rankings
        Obama
        Subscriber Content
        Durbin
        Burris
        Blagojevich Trial
        Advertising
        Updated Posts
        Polls

        Archives
        April 2014
        March 2014
        February 2014
        January 2014
        December 2013
        November 2013
        October 2013
        September 2013
        August 2013
        July 2013
        June 2013
        May 2013
        April 2013
        March 2013
        February 2013
        January 2013
        December 2012
        November 2012
        October 2012
        September 2012
        August 2012
        July 2012
        June 2012
        May 2012
        April 2012
        March 2012
        February 2012
        January 2012
        December 2011
        November 2011
        October 2011
        September 2011
        August 2011
        July 2011
        June 2011
        May 2011
        April 2011
        March 2011
        February 2011
        January 2011
        December 2010
        November 2010
        October 2010
        September 2010
        August 2010
        July 2010
        June 2010
        May 2010
        April 2010
        March 2010
        February 2010
        January 2010
        December 2009
        November 2009
        October 2009
        September 2009
        August 2009
        July 2009
        June 2009
        May 2009
        April 2009
        March 2009
        February 2009
        January 2009
        December 2008
        November 2008
        October 2008
        September 2008
        August 2008
        July 2008
        June 2008
        May 2008
        April 2008
        March 2008
        February 2008
        January 2008
        December 2007
        November 2007
        October 2007
        September 2007
        August 2007
        July 2007
        June 2007
        May 2007
        April 2007
        March 2007
        February 2007
        January 2007
        December 2006
        November 2006
        October 2006
        September 2006
        August 2006
        July 2006
        June 2006
        May 2006
        April 2006
        March 2006
        February 2006
        January 2006
        December 2005
        April 2005
        March 2005
        February 2005
        January 2005
        December 2004
        November 2004
        October 2004

        Blog*Spot Archives
        November 2005
        October 2005
        September 2005
        August 2005
        July 2005
        June 2005
        May 2005

        Syndication

        RSS Feed 2.0
        Comments RSS 2.0
        WordPress

        Loading


        * Quinn grants 43 clemency petitions..
        * Quinn: New controls after Medicaid paid for dead..
        * Governor Quinn Wants New Medicaid Controls..
        * States target tiny beads in facial cleansers th.....
        * State law on hospital exemption sends property .....
        * Races to Watch in 2014..


        * Chicagoan to run 35th straight Boston Marathon
        * US Sen. Durbin says he's taking Oberweis seriously
        * 5 killed, 22 wounded in Chicago shootings
        * NASA: Engineer vital to moon landing success dies
        * Chicago man killed in Salt Lake City stabbing
        * Ill. GOP officials who wanted Brady out replaced
        * Gov. Quinn backs state spending for Obama library
        * Quinn: New controls after Medicaid paid for dead
        * $14M awarded in suit linking contraceptive, stroke
        * $14M awarded in lawsuit linking pill to stroke

        * Addiction experts: Illinois budget cuts could hurt drug treatment
        * Comptroller Topinka reports $125K in income
        * Bernard Schoenburg: Durbin, Oberweis spar over earmarks, minimum wage
        * Statehouse Insider: It doesn’t always add up in the General Assembly
        * Chicago casino plan draws more support at legislative hearing
        * Video gaming may get its own exclusion list
        * U of I officials seeking to prevent retirement rush
        * U of I asks state legislators to prevent retirement rush; could affect 200 at UIS
        * 2015 tax rates still far from settled
        * Strip club tax brings in much less than expected

        * Census: People are leaving all six Chicago-area counties
        * Trixie and Chad have kids!
        * Quinn administration funds Diana Rauner's nonprofit
        * Why Lenovo's Moto bid is looking smarter
        * Ignoring Shakespeare's butcher, law firm advises how to cut legal bills


        * Apparent inmate suicide investigated at Lake County Jail
        * City sends bike cops into high-crime neighborhoods
        * Newborn found dead in Northwest Side gangway
        * Husband and wife — both law enforcement officers — dead in apparent murder-suicide: police
        * 5 dead, 22 wounded in shootings since Friday evening
        * 7 dead, 22 wounded in shootings since Friday evening
        * 5 dead, 19 wounded in shootings since Friday evening
        * 5 dead, 21 people shot in 24 hours
        * Cardinal’s exemplary courage, grace
        * Painful North Side CTA bypass is right move for the future


        * Husband and wife -- both officers -- found shot to death in Garfield Ridge home
        * Cops: 5 dead, 13 others injured in shootings
        * Body of newborn boy found in Logan Square gangway
        * Boy, 16, shot on South Side
        * Geneva kayak trip turns fatal


        * Illinois Finally Gets 'No Child Left Behind' Waiver
        * U Of I: Illinois Pension Overhaul Had Costly Mistake
        * Fish fry dinners bring food, community to Catholics during Lent
        * Listen To State Week - April 18, 2014
        * Murray Center Advocates Win Appeals Decision
        * Employment Improves, But Illinois Still Lags U.S.
        * Nine Illinois lawmakers vote to fund Obama library - but only five members in attendance
        * WBEZ's Student Stories
        * Interview: John Tinker & The Landmark Case On Students' Right To Free Speech
        * State Legislation Hints At Marijuana Legalization


        * Our Opinion: Don’t drag feet on drone regulation
        * Bernard Schoenburg: Durbin, Oberweis spar over earmarks, minimum wage
        * Bernard Schoenburg: Durbin, Oberweis spar over earmarks, minimum wage
        * Statehouse Insider: It doesn’t always add up in the General Assembly
        * Statehouse Insider: It doesn’t always add up in the General Assembly
        * Armenta L. Johnson: Advocate for quality education to avoid segregation
        * Catherine Walters: Prairie Center Against Sexual Assault notes anniversary, awareness month
        * Video gaming may get its own exclusion list
        * U of I asks state legislators to prevent retirement rush; could affect 200 at UIS
        * Quinn grants 43 clemency requests


        * Divorces 4/20/14
        * Murphysboro to honor Weber with community service award
        * Waste oil collected as fundraiser
        * Augustana holds Summer Academy for high school students
        * All together: Easter service at Bald Knob Cross unites people of many denominations
        * Clinton marathon set along riverfront
        * HIV cases are on the rise in Southern Illinois
        * Wigs, hats and hope: Cancer Care Closet helps women feel better
        * Will Madison County enterprise zone get extension?
        * Neighborhood watch: Crimes of the week


        * The 10th District money race
        * Aurora Democrat calls out IHSA
        * Lawyers: Ill. hazing law vague, unconstitutional
        * Ill. House OKs lower-cost hunting bill for seniors
        * Quinn’s running mate takes new consulting job

        * Lipinski seeks artistic submissions - The ...
        * Lemont VFW honors Vietnam veterans - Subur...
        * Lipinski Votes to Protect the Paychecks of...
        * Meet the 8 House Dems who don't co-sponsor...
        * Jeff Vorva's Editor's Notebook: In this ca...
        * Rep. Lipinski Honors Vietnam Vets on House...
        * Southwest Airlines Adding 9 Non-Stop Daily...
        * Lipinski Announces Southwest will Start Fl...
        * Lipinski Thanks Voters for Support in Unco...
        * Rep. Aaron Schock in Japan, China, South K...

        * Loading Koch Industries Website Too Many T......
        * Maryland and DC among worst for food aller......
        * Cleveland State University to reestablish ......
        * Convicted political boss Al Sanchez runnin......
        * Candidates make last filings for local, st......

        * Illinois Lt. Gov. Simon opposes pension le......
        * Dillard Odd Man Out on Pension Deal Reaction...
        * Sen. Mark Kirk sides with Rauner on pensio......
        * Governor's race infighting threatens pensi......
        * SCHOONERS - Home of Everyone's Favorite Be......

        * GTCR is Rauner’s Bain Capital. So Squeezy gives him a state contract. Shaking up Springfield?
        * Sunday book review section. This is Not a Test.
        * The Library of Congress Pkwy?
        * Sen. Mark Kirk pokes at Eric Holder: Did NSA spy on Congress?
        * Democratic National Committee Executive Committee meeting in Chicago June 8
        * Emily's List hits Chicago June 27: Sebelius, Lisa Madigan, Neely, Finney to speak
        * Feinstein, Chambliss defend phone data snooping to "keep the homeland safe." Durbin has concerns. UPDATED
        * President Obama official schedule and guidance June 6, 2013. North Carolina, California
        * Verizon phone records secretly collected by the National Security Agency
        * Obama to tap genocide fighter, Pulitzer Prize winner Samantha Power to become new United Nations Ambassador


        * Governor Quinn Announces Investments to Conserve Lake Michigan Shoreline - Visits Volunteer Beach Clean-up to Announce Investments That Will Support Environmental Education and Stewardship Projects
        * Governor Pat Quinn Takes Clemency Action
        * Proposed Rules for Compassionate Use of Medical Cannabis Pilot Program Act Filed
        * Adopt-A-Highway Spring Cleanup Begins Today - Annual Event Honors Earth Day, Tackles Roadside Litter After Harsh Winter
        * Illinois Schools Win No Child Left Behind Waiver - Federal Government Approves Flexibility Needed for Successful Implementation of State Strategies to Improve Student Learning




            Hosted by MCS SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax Advertise Here Mobile Version Contact Rich Miller