Friday, February 03, 2006

Maryland Democrats Shut Down House to Avoid Voting

The Washington Times reports:

Democratic lawmakers in Maryland, determined to avoid a vote on homosexual "marriage" in an election year, closed the House yesterday to quash a constitutional amendment endorsing traditional marriage.

In a move unprecedented in the modern history of the General Assembly, House Speaker Michael E. Busch abruptly recessed the chamber to block a vote on a proposed amendment that would define marriage as a union only of one man and one woman.


Most Maryland voters -- 54 percent -- would approve a constitutional amendment defining marriage as a union of a man and a woman, according to a recent poll conducted by Rasmussen Reports.

And voters ultimately would decide whether to amend the state's constitution when they go to the polls in November. The amendment needs the support of three-fifths of both General Assembly chambers to get on the ballot.

It's always amusing to see Democrats take stands against democracy, recalling the ones that claimed that the California recall is "undemocratic". This particular display of theatrics was a bit more serious than the non-story that produced Just Barely Inside the Beltway's inaugural post - it has the actual consequences of preventing the people of Maryland from deciding this important issue for themselves.

Mr. Busch gaveled the chamber into recess nine minutes into yesterday's session, just as Republicans tried to submit a discharge petition to bring the bill to the House floor.


"It's game-playing," said Delegate Anthony J. O'Donnell, Southern Maryland Republican and minority whip. "It is one more example of unchecked power by a [Democratic] majority that has been in control of the House for 180 years."

Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr., a Republican who supports the amendment, said closing the House was "at least, an abuse of the spirit of the rules."


"[Democrats] went through great political gyrations to get around what should have been a straightforward process," said Delegate Michael D. Smigiel Sr., Eastern Shore Republican and committee member. "They were more interested in protecting their political party than in letting Marylanders vote on this important issue."

The dueling headlines are particularly interesting:
The Washington Post: Gay Marriage Ban Fails in Md.: GOP Sponsor Vows to Revive Measure With Parliamentary Ploys
The Washington Times: Busch Blocks Vote on Marriage
The Washington Times should be applauded for not ignoring the Democrat parliamentary ploys that created the story in the first place.

For more on the debate, check out Marriage in Maryland.

Technorati Tags: , , ,

No comments: