UPDATED: Gavin Newsom's office is denying the charges published by Towleroad. Their statement added to the end of the post.
The New Hampshire house has sent the amendment to create a religious exemption to their same-sex marriage bill back to committee. It was rushed through the senate and was expected to quickly pass the house so that the governor, who asked for this language, could sign it immediately.
This is a good thing. Nan Hunter raised some interesting questions and answered others about the scope of this religious exemption. She also said that it was the most sweeping religious exemption to a marriage bill to date. Considering that these three exemptions - New Hampshire's, Connecticut's, and Vermont's - will probably set a baseline for the rest of the country, it's a good thing that they're taking the time to consider it more carefully, especially since the language could mean that religious hospitals won't have to allow same-sex partners to visit patients.
In other news, Towleroad is reporting that the ruling on the Prop 8 case in California, expected today, has been held off until tomorrow because of Gavin Newsom asked them to. His reason? He didn't want the ruling to coincide with the White Night riots, where queers took to the street because Harvey Milk's killer got off easy:
"Newsom reached out to the Supreme Court and asked them to hold off releasing their decision so it did not coincide with the White Night riots," said our source.
So, um, wait until tomorrow, folks. Gavin Newsom probably doesn't want to have a large riot of gays who want to marry on his hands, considering his own "stoke the flames" role in same-sex marriage in California and his upcoming gubernatorial run.
UPDATE: This is in from Gavin Newsom's office:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Wednesday, May 20, 2009
Contact: Mayor's Office of Communications,
*** STATEMENT ***
STATEMENT FROM NATHAN BALLARD
COMMUNICATIONS DIRECTOR, MAYOR GAVIN NEWSOM
Today a website posted an item that quoted a false allegation from an
unnamed source: "Mayor [Gavin] Newsom reached out to the Supreme Court and
asked them to hold off releasing their decision so it did not coincide with
the White Night riots."
This allegation is not true. We have asked the website to correct the item