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Posted by on Oct 19, 2006 in At TMV | 17 comments

Screw the Gays… And Those Who Do Not Hate Them

Kansas: do you really want this man to represent you?

I missed this a couple of days ago, but comment ‘Rambie’ e-mailed a link to me to the story about it at the Washington Post. He – rightfully – wrote in the e-mail ‘It shows how “Sexual McCarthyism” to use InstaPundit’s term is indeed alive and well in American Politics, but not exclusively by the party he thinks is using it.’

From the editorial:

IF YOU THOUGHT that fights over judicial nominations couldn’t get any worse, consider the case of Janet T. Neff, whom President Bush has nominated to a federal district judgeship in Michigan. Judge Neff, who serves on the Michigan Court of Appeals, is part of a multi-judge deal between the White House and Michigan’s two Democratic senators resolving a long-standing fight over federal court nominees from that state. Yet in reaching an accommodation with the home-state senators, Mr. Bush finds himself with another problem. For Judge Neff, it turns out, once attended a commitment ceremony for a lesbian couple — and that has Kansas Sen. Sam Brownback (R) reaching for the smelling salts and blocking the nomination.

Mr. Brownback has said he wants to satisfy himself that the judge was not presiding over an “illegal marriage ceremony” in Pittsfield, Mass., in 2002 — before the state legalized same-sex marriage. He has written to Judge Neff asking for an explanation, his spokesman says, and will hold up her nomination until he learns the nature of the ceremony and its legality. “It seems to speak about her view of judicial activism,” the senator told the Associated Press.

Well, til there I could understand his point. If a judge acted against the law, I can see why politicians would not want her to become a federal judge. However, this is not the so in this particular case:

In fact it does nothing of the kind. A commitment ceremony is not a marriage; it has no legal force whatsoever but is a private expression of the love and devotion of two people. The idea that such a ceremony could be “illegal” is deeply offensive; Americans are entitled to gather, speak, celebrate and worship as they see fit. An administration official says Judge Neff has told Mr. Brownback that she didn’t preside. But even if she did, that would say nothing about her jurisprudential views — merely that she wished to help a couple recognize their relationship informally in the absence of state sanction for it. Keeping Judge Neff off the federal bench over such a matter is perilously close to declaring her unfit to serve because she has lesbian friends.

In other words; what Senator Brownback is ‘opposing’ is that Janet T. Neff was present at a ceremony in which two lesbians expressed their love for each other. The ceremony does not have any legal binding whatsoever.

I am glad that Rambie sent this e-mail because this case is absolutely outrageous and – as such – deserves attention here at TMV. Senator Brownback is quite clearly a person who simply opposes homosexual-relationships an sich and he is letting this personal convictions influence his voting behavior / behavior as a Senator.

This has nothing to do with the law: it has everything to do with an intolerant Kansas Senator who is willing to block a nomination out of this intolerance.

What’s next? Blocking nominations because someone simply has homosexual friends? Because, as the editorial points out, this behavior of Sen. Brownback, is dangerously close to just that.