Update: the State Senate passed AB 43

Just this morning, in a 22-15 vote, the Senate joined the Assembly in asking the Governor to provide same-sex couples with the same safety and security of marriage that opposite-sex couples have always had.

Those of you who have been following my letter-writing campaign know the issues: the Governor is using Proposition 22, a state-rights voter initiative passed in 2000, both as a measure of the intent of the voters and an excuse to veto these bills.

There is no legal conflict with Proposition 22, since the initiative did not affect California marriages one bit, legally or practically. AB 43 would actually reverse a 1977 law that the legislature passed and our current Attorney General signed when he was Governor.

Using Proposition 22 as a measure of the people’s intent is suspect. Seven years after Proposition 22, polls here in California show the people actually support the freedom to marry by a small – but significant – margin. Voters reelected every Senator and Assemblymember who voted for marriage freedom last session, and we received three more votes in the Senate than last time.

There is no point in lobbying the Governor when he uses mischaracterizations of the law to shield himself from taking controversial actions. As soon as Mr. Schwarzenegger is out of office, we will have the freedom to marry. By signing this bill, he will extend his legacy, but with a veto, the Governor is using his pen as a weapon to meddle with freedom and divide California.

Letter to Senator Jack Scott – thank you and please talk to your colleagues

Senator Jack Scott
State Capitol
Room 2082
Sacramento, CA 94248-0001

Dear Senator Scott –

Like you, I’m a parent and a taxpayer in California, and I believe that all California couples deserve the freedom to be married.

The Senate is shortly going to consider AB 43, the Religious Freedom and Civil Marriage Protection Act. I know that you support this bill, but I’m writing to you as your constituent to thank you for your support and ask you to get your colleagues to support it as well.

The Governor has said that he will veto this bill. Because this issue is so important to me and my family, I have been writing a letter to him every day since July 12 to ask him to sign it instead.

I have enclosed a couple of my favorite letters, but they are all posted on my Web site, http://signab43.blogspot.com. Could you please talk to your colleagues about this and ask them to read some of my letters?

Freedom is an issue that spans party lines, and this bill will not only provide our same-sex couples the freedom to marry, it will also let the Churches that support them to perform the ceremony. The California Legislature and Jerry Brown changed the law to exclude lesbian and gay families in 1977; the legislature and Arnold Schwarzenegger can reverse it in 2007.

If you can think of anything I can do to help you advance this issue, please don’t hesitate to contact me.

Many thanks,