Alex Blaze

Two marriage items: Back to committee in New Hampshire and California ruling delayed by Gavin Newsom

Filed By Alex Blaze | May 20, 2009 5:30 PM | comments

Filed in: Marriage Equality, Politics, The Movement
Tags: California, Dan White, Gavin Newsom, gay marriage, Harvey Milk, lesbian, LGBT, marriage, marriage equality, Nan Hunter, New Hampshire, religious exemption, same-sex marriage, san francisco, Senate, White Night Riots

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,
415-554-6131

*** 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
immediately.


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Don Sherfick Don Sherfick | May 20, 2009 5:49 PM

I dunno, Alex. I don't know a thing about the nature of New Hampshire politics [I tried a quick poll of all 432,000 housholds about the nuances but it was total flop], but something seems a bit fishy. How convenient for some legislators having second thoughts about their original vote legalizing same sex marriage to now help assure its defeat by a governor's veto because of insufficient religious liberty protections.

The court releases opinions on Thursdays and Mondays and sends notices of upcoming releases on Wednesdays and Fridays (by 10 am PST) so it'll be at least Friday before we hear type of official word on this.

As posted in the comments on Pam's House Blend:

Statement from Nathan Ballard, Communications Director, Mayor Gavin Newsom on Propositon 8 Ruling

05/20/09 - 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 immediately.

Link here.

And, in paraphrase of what I said over there: C'mon -- this rumor doesn't even pass the laugh test, so let's not repeat it. Let's just wait a few more days and react to the actual opinion, please.

Gavin Newsom's office sent a press release denying the Towleroad item that Newsom asked the Court to change the date. I've updated Alex's post to include their statement.

"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."

That isn't right either. The ruling was expected tomorrow. It's tomorrow that will be the 30th anniversary of the riots.

from the blog post you linked to...
"As mentioned earlier, a ruling Thursday would have fallen on the 30th anniversary of the San Francisco riots"

This illuminates a new push for equal rights awareness and activism: The Joint Commission on the Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations (JCAHO)

Hospitals and other health care establishments that do not recognize same sex couples should be denied JCAHO accreditation. Catholic hospitals are free to discriminate, they just won't get paid.

What date does the current legislative session end?