Adam Polaski

Bachmann Responds to NY Marriage Equality

Filed By Adam Polaski | June 26, 2011 3:00 PM | comments

Filed in: Fundie Watch, Marriage Equality, Politics
Tags: Chris Wallace, Face the Nation, Fox News Sunday, marriage equality, Michele Bachmann, Minnesota, New York

Bachmann.jpgReactions to New York's passage of marriage equality continue to pour in, and some of them are surprising. For example, Michele Bachmann, the GOP presidential nomination hopeful who is notably opposed to LGBT equality, said on Fox News Sunday this morning that she was OK with New York's decision on the grounds that she supports states' rights.

Despite her agreement that the decision is valid, the Minnesota congresswoman explained that she would have preferred a ballot initiative, as "it's best to allow the people to decide on this issue." She smugly noted that ballot initiatives on marriage equality have not experienced success (video below).

On the same program, she reportedly said that as president, she would support a constitutional amendment to define marriage between a man and a woman. Bachmann will officially announce her campaign for the presidency on Monday in her hometown of Waterloo, Iowa.

Later in the day, she appeared on CBS' Face the Nation (video below), where she said, "I stand for the proposition that marriage is between a man and a woman." She spoke more about marriage equality and LGB rights:

I think that Minnesota this year, for instance, just about a month ago or so, passed at the legislative level the constitutional amendment to allow the people to decide what the definition of marriage will be, so that ballot question will be on the ballot in 2012. The people of New York came to a different conclusion. I think what we know is that, ultimately, you have all the various laws in the various states. There'll be a conflict if someone from New York, for instance, moves to a state where marriage is between a man and a woman, will these marriages be recognized. Ultimately, it'll go to the courts.

Here is the exchange between Bachmann and Fox News Sunday host Chris Wallace:

Bachmann: In New York state, they have passed the law at the state legislative level and, under the 10th amendment, the states have the right to set the laws that they want to set.

Wallace: So even though you oppose it, then its OK from -- your point of view -- for New York to say that same-sex marriage is legal.

Bachmann: That is up to the people of New York. I think that it's best to allow the people to decide on this issue. I think it's best if there is an amendment that goes on the ballot, where people can weigh in. Every time this issue has gone on the ballot, the people have voted to retain the traditional definition of marriage as recently as California in 2008.

Wallace: But you would agree, if its passed by the state legislature and signed by the governor, then that's the state's position.

Bachmann: It's state law. And the 10th amendment reserves to the states that right.

And here is video from her Face the Nation appearance:

img src screenshot


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Michele Bachmann is a fair-weather federalist. She would allow the states to reach the results that are best for them, but if she didn't like their decisions, she'd take care of it at the federal level. Seems to vitiate her position on states' rights.

Ted Hayes Ted Hayes | June 27, 2011 7:34 AM

"Despite her agreement that the decision is valid, the Minnesota congresswoman explained that she would have preferred a ballot initiative, as 'it's best to allow the people to decide on this issue.'"

Does this woman, a lawyer, not know the Constitution? Equality is something guaranteed by the 14th Amendment. It is not something to be granted or withdrawn by the will of the people. My equality as a citizen of the United States is not for her to decide.

Agreed. What's worse is that she's arguing for three separate actions:

1. States have the right to grant marriage equality.
2. "The People" have the right to vote on whether or not they want marriage equality in their state.
3. There should be a constitutional amendment, federally, banning marriage equality.

Her priority order, it seems, is 3, 2, 1. Awesome.

boehmianrhapsody | June 27, 2011 10:48 AM

Since we do not have the transcript for #3, perhaps she referred to the pending state constitutional amendment (Minnesota has one coming up, correct?)

Bill Perdue Bill Perdue | June 27, 2011 11:31 AM

More to the point is a comparison between Obama's opinion on states' rights and same sex marriage with those of Bachmann. They're a close match.

Also, both pigheadedly oppose same sex marriage on religious grounds. Obama says: "For me as a Christian, it is a sacred union. God's in the mix." while Bachmann says: "I stand for the proposition that marriage is between a man and a woman."

Their biggest difference is that Bachman is for the Federal Marriage Amendment and Obama says it's 'unnecessary' because Democrat Bill Clintons DOMA is still in force (because he, Obama, refused to lead a fight to repeal it).

Obama is a Republican in drag. On Tuesday, November 6th, 2012 vote socialist, vote left or just sit it out. Instead of worrying about which right wing candidate wins concentrate on building mass movements to win our agenda.

I do wish Obama would explain how "God is in the mix" when the IRS rules that two men or two women can't file joint tax returns.

Again, he is conflating religious marriage with civil marriage -- and it has to be a convenient ruse, because I am sure he is smarter than that.

Bill Perdue Bill Perdue | June 27, 2011 10:06 PM

It is a ruse. 'gawd's in the mix' was the culmination of a summer of building outreach to pentecostals, mormoms, catholic's, southern baptists and others to break the Republicans hold on anti-GLBT voters and steal some of them for Obama.

He was largely successful in that effort. The first take on exit polls dissecting Barack Obama's historic presidential victory indicates the famous "God gap" dividing American politics is still largely in place, but Obama fashioned a victory by cutting it down nearly everywhere -- among those who worship frequently and those who don't. Pew Forum

The summer before his election began with his refusal to condemn scum like Donnie McClurkin and Rich Warren and to disavow anti-GLBT bigots like ordained pentecostal bigot Leah Daughtry, who still runs the day to day operations of the DNC and his then campaign director of religious Outreach, ordained pentecostal bigot Joshua Dubois, who went on to become Executive Director Office of the White House Office of Faith Based and Neighborhood Partnerships.

Things haven't changed much in two years. Obama's still at it.

I've always been confused by how Obama can use the "as a Christian" line. His last membership was in the United Church of Christ, a denomination which has chosen to perform and recognize equal marriage.

Well, not that kind of Christian, Emily. The other kind. But he didn't inhale, I'm sure.

Bill Perdue Bill Perdue | June 27, 2011 10:11 PM

Didn't he run away from them?

If memory serves Pat Robertson and Limbaugh were outraged and said that his pastor, Jeremiah Wright was a black nationalist who had the temerity to be critical of US war aims and the audacity to use "inflammatory rhetoric" when he claimed that Clinton and Bush "brought on the 9/11 attacks with its own terrorism."

Rev. Wright wasn't, to my knowledge, a black nationalist. I could be wrong. But Obama joined the UCC because of him, but later left because of him. Wright's sermons were phrased stringently and they made good sound clips for the right. But I think what he was really trying to say was that his loyalty went to the side of God's justice, even when that meant he was at odds with his country. That's actually not so radical an idea, but one rooted in the age old idea of rejecting idolatry.

Bill Perdue Bill Perdue | June 28, 2011 1:13 AM

"Pat Robertson and Limbaugh were outraged and said that his pastor, Jeremiah Wright was a black nationalist..."

In general nationalists take the position that political independence and national independence/separation are the roads to real liberation. When that's combined with a class analysis that sees class differences between the looter classes, the banksters and an oppressed nationality that's overwhelmingly working class it offers a good political guide to measure people by. It's unclear to me if he's that kind of nationalist or just honest in his criticisms of racism.

Wright certainly knows the language of nationalism and is very much opposed to American nationalism. Many of his views are similar to Black Nationalist, radical antiwar and revolutionary socialist opinions because they tell the truth. Wiki says " Wright spoke of the United States taking land from the Indian tribes by what he labeled as terror, bombing Grenada, Panama, Libya, Hiroshima, and Nagasaki, and argued that the United States supported state terrorism against the Palestinians and South Africa. He said that his parishioners' response should be to examine their relationship with God, not go "from the hatred of armed enemies to the hatred of unarmed innocents." His comment (quoting Malcolm X) that "America's chickens are coming home to roost" was widely interpreted as meaning that America had brought the September 11, 2001 attacks upon itself."

The violence of the racist attacks on Wright frightened Obama, who ran away from Wright, "saying that he was "outraged" and "saddened" by his behavior, and in resigned from his group. It was as striking as his efforts to distance himself from GLBT politics and later from unions. At this point Obama is a bit to the right of Nixon.