Marriage Equality A Big Winner In 2012

Lost in all of my analysis covering the presidential election last week was this VERY important news:
November 6 marked landmark strides for marriage equality in several states. Voters backed ballot measures in Maryland, Washington and Maine to allow same sex marriage while Minnesota blocked a constitutional amendment that would ban the practice. They join seven states that already allowed same sex marriages; Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Connecticut, New York, Washington D.C., and Iowa already allowed the practice. A number of other states recognize civil unions, a practice likely to pass in Colorado.


The states’ marriage equality initiatives have been closely watched issues across the nation, as Americans wondered if views on gay marriage have softened since conservatives gained big wins in the midterm elections two years ago. It turns out, we have. Marriage equality still has a long way to go; more states reject the practice those that accept gay marriages. Even so, Obama’s last term held some progress, with executive actions to repeal Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell and allow openly gay soldiers serve in the military. Additionally, both Joe Biden and Barack Obama have expressed support for same sex marriage. Perhaps the next term will bring even more progress for gay and lesbian equality. In the meantime, at least for 4 states, marriage equality progress has already come.
My emphasis.

If you follow this site, you know that I am an ardent supporter of marriage equality for all.

In the wake of the election one week ago, I really enjoyed what WaPo's Jennifer Rubin had to say on the Right Turn blog:
Right Turn has made the point repeatedly that the issue of gay marriage is a generational one, a battle that social conservatives have lost. That was crystal clear yesterday. Maine, Minnesota, Washington and Maryland handled gay marriage the right way in a democracy — proponents went to the voters, made their case and won the support of a majority of their fellow citizens. Minnesota rejected a ban on gay marriage; the other states acted affirmatively to approve it. Conservatives can have no principled opposition to a exercise of democracy that embodies the principles of federalism.

Add to that the election of Tammy Baldwin, the first openly gay member of the U.S. Senate and the end of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” in the U.S. military and you have a sea change. Conservatives can make their case at the state level and can in principled fashion insist that voters, not appointed judges, make the decision, but as a national issue there is no other way to put it: The ship has sailed.