The Agenda

Anti-gay leaders prepare to undermine Supreme Court over marriage

Right-wing Republican figures including presidential candidate Rick Santorum have begun to ramp up their rhetoric as the U.S. waits for an expected ruling this month from the Supreme Court on the constitutionality of state same-sex marriage bans. With most observers betting on a ruling favorable to same-sex couples, political figures opposed to marriage equality say they won’t let the Court have the last word on the subject.
“I think it’s important to understand that the Supreme Court doesn’t have the final word. It has its word. Its word has validity. But it’s important for Congress and the president, frankly, to push back when the Supreme Court gets it wrong,” Santorum told Chuck Todd on NBC’s Meet the Press on Sunday.
Right Wing Watch published an audio clip of former GOP House Leader Tom Delay urging Americans to “rise up” should the Supreme Court strike down marriage bans. “The Supreme Court is about to put out a ruling on marriage and they have no jurisdiction to do so, they shouldn’t have even heard this case, they have no right to redefine marriage and hopefully the American people will rise up and really undermine the legitimacy of the Supreme Court,” Delay said.
Anti-LGBTQ groups are also in full-on freakout mode, publishing scary, baseless theories about the consequences of ending state bans. Focus on the Family’s information page about the upcoming ruling says churches “risk losing tax-exempt status, which could lead to loss of donations/income,” and pastors “risk fines/jail time for refusing to perform same-sex marriages.”
It’s unclear how Americans might “rise up” against the Supreme Court, as Delay suggests. Santorum’s comment that Congress and the president can “push back” against the Court’s ruling would presumably require solid backing from the electorate, but a new Gallup poll on the subject is bad news for former senator from Pennsylvania. The organization just recorded the highest-ever support for same-sex marriage among Americans of all ages and political stripes.