State House Sound Bites

Capitol reporter Mary Wilson covers Pennsylvania politics and issues at the Pennsylvania state capitol.

On gay marriage, Corbett not far from polls

Written by Mary Wilson, Capitol Bureau Chief | Aug 30, 2013 2:16 PM

Recent polls show the nuance of the majority of respondents' position on same-sex marriage, as the Corbett administration struggles to stick to a single message on the issue.
54 percent of voters polled by Franklin & Marshall College in May said they support gay marriage.

Yet, in F&M's August poll, 76 percent of the August respondents said it's unacceptable for government officials to ignore the state's ban on gay marriage.

"You can be for something but on the other hand you can easily reach the conclusion that the way to accomplish the objective is through a legal means," said pollster Terry Madonna.

The actions of the Corbett administration have stuck rather close to the wishes of the majority respondents in the most recent poll.

Corbett's lawyers have sued the Montgomery County Register of Wills, D. Bruce Hanes, for issuing marriage licenses to gay and lesbian couples in violation of state law.

In a legal brief filed by Corbett's lawyers, same-sex couples are compared to children, as a way of showing why such couples, also barred from marrying, would not have standing in the case.

The attorneys defended the argument in a press release, but Corbett has since said the analogy was "inappropriate."


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Comments: 3

  • dregstudios img 2013-08-30 16:10

    Here in TN, they’ve gone as far as to declare this Saturday “Traditional Marriage Day” in which the bill passing this new state holiday quotes The Holy Bible. Why does the State feel it has the right to continually define marriage? Exactly what is “Traditional” Marriage in Tennessee seeing as even Interracial Marriage is STILL outlawed by the State Constitution along with Same Sex Marriage?

  • Jason Knight img 2013-08-30 20:12

    On gay marriage, Corbett certainly IS far from polls! As noted in the article, the majority of Pennsylvanians support marriage equality, so it's disgraceful that Corbett is using our tax money to try to defend a discriminatory (and ultimately unconstitutional) state law. Why doesn't Corbett instead work on the People's behalf to help overturn PA's wrongful DOMA law?

    I think it's a shame that most Pennsylvanians, while agreeing with Bruce Hanes' motive, don't support his means - especially considering he's absolutely right that people's constitutional rights are being trampled and the discrimination needs to stop NOW. Sometimes you need to pull a Rosa Parks and refuse to give up your bus seat - and kudos to public officials like Mr Hanes who have the courage to do that.

  • edgarhalcyon1 img 2013-08-31 18:29

    It must be so nice for those whose civil rights AREN'T dependent on polls and who don't have to fight to obtain them. The actions of D. Bruce Hanes might result in action. If I had to wait for the legislature, in Pennsylvania to act upon it, it wouldn't happen until long after I was dead!

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