All But One Jewish Lawmakers Back Same-Sex Marriage
04/02/2013 - 19:47
Douglas Bloomfield

Jewish backing for same sex marriage is nearly unanimous among Jewish members of Congress.  All 12 senators and 21 of 22 represenatives are supporters.  The lone holdout is the only Jewish Republican in the 113th Congress, Rep. Eric Cantor of Virginia.

Republicans have been so slow to express their support that when one does come out it national makes headlines.  That's what happened Tuesday when the second senator, Republican, Mark Kirk of Illinois, declared support of same sex marriage.  Last month Rob Portman of Ohio got extensive national media attention when he became the first just as the Supreme Court was about to take up the issue. He said he was largely influenced by the fact that his son is gay.

Only two House Republicans make the list:  Ileana Ros-Lehtinen of Florida and Richard Hanna of New York.  Ros-Lehtinen's transgender daughter is an outspoken LBGT activist.

Republicans have launched a multi-million-dollar campaign to change their image among minority voters.  It was motivated by seeing more than 70 percent of Hispanics vote Democrat last year along with 70 percent of Jews and 95 percent of African Americans.  The party – predominantly white Christian men -- is also trying to shed its image of homophobia but judging by the paucity of those endorsing same sex marriage, it isn't not making much progress.

The numbers keep changing but here's the latest sampling of supporters for gay marriage, according to a tally by Wikipedia.

Senate:  46 Democrats, 2 Independents, 2 Republicans.

House of Representatives:  171 Democrats, 2 Republicans

Kirk, who recently returned to the Senate after suffering a stroke, said, “When I climbed the Capitol steps in January, I promised myself that I would return to the Senate with an open mind and greater respect for others. Same-sex couples should have the right to civil marriage. Our time on this Earth is limited, I know that better than most. Life comes down to who you love and who loves you back — government has no place in the middle.” 

editor@jewishweek.org

Comments

nothing to be proud of

Equal rights for all. It's a capital idea, even if not used. My case in point, my (partner) of 17 years, who was in the hospital for non threatening aspirated pneumonia (let's not say it was San Francisco General) died because a temporary nurse thought it a good idea to shove pills down his protesting throat. He aspirated a second and final time. Nothing can bring him back, but it would have been nice to sue to make sure this doesn't happen to others. Now being married ( thanks Gavin Newsom) for 18 years, I can tell you being married feels better than a legal partnership.

If this is true, hope this majority of "Jewish" members of Congress repent before too long.

Not gay marriage but gay mirage.

Comment Guidelines

The Jewish Week feels comments create a valuable conversation and wants to feature your thoughts on our website. To make everyone feel welcome, we won't publish comments that are profane, irrelevant, promotional or make personal attacks.

Add comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
By submitting this form, you accept the Mollom privacy policy.