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mccain7.jpgAs John McCain continues to keep a low profile on the California Supreme Court’s legalization of gay marriage, the Philadelphia Inquirer’s Dick Polman has a helpful reminder about McCain’s personal experience with gay marriage bans. While the bans have passed in literally dozens of states in the last few years, the one place one has appeared on a ballot and failed was in Arizona, where McCain helped lead the charge to pass it in the 2006 election.
Polman provides context:

Even though he has been pandering to conservatives for the past several years, undercutting his so-called “maverick” image in all kinds of ways (he is now for the Bush tax cuts after having voted against them), he really would prefer not to talk about gay people at all, much less lead a moral crusade against the way they might wish to live. He’s a traditional Sunbelt conservative, with a strong strain of libertarianism, which means his instinct is to leave people alone….
The one time he put himself on the line for the issue, he was embarrassed by the results. In 2006, the voters of Arizona rejected a ballot initiative banning gay marriage within their borders – after McCain appeared in a TV ad making a pitch for the ban. And that was on his home turf. It’s hard to imagine he will now lead a charge against gay marriage in Ohio and Pennsylvania and other swing states – and risk turning off the independent voters whom he needs so badly in November.

Arizona religious conservatives are fighting to put another constitutional ban on gay marriage on the ballot this year. McCain appears to support it, but it’s difficult to tell. He seems to be keeping a low profile on the effort this time around.


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