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Saturday, March 27, 2004

Stephanie Herseth Democratic Supporter of the Bush Amendment Visits Minneapolis

She will be in town for a fundraiser next week.

From Daily Kos:

I was extremely disappointed to read your support for President Bush's proposal to amend the Constitution.

As a progressive democrat who only knows about you because of the political blogs I frequent, I believe you are making a serious error in your bid for election by supporting this. I think I can state with confidence that the so-called 'blogosphere' will not support you monetarily or in any other manner if you take such an anti-progressive stance. And this will hurt your campaign.

I think it's possible to be against gay marriage and to also be against sullying the Constitution with this frivolous, divisive, and blatantly opportunistic proposal from the President. And I think you should say so, unless you actually do want the Constitution amended.

I read your campaign's "clarification" on Daily Kos and Escaton, and I don't think you did yourself any favors. At best you merely muddied the waters, by hiding the phrase "federal legislation" in your apparent support of states' rights. Come on, Ms. Herseth! The waffling and nuancing that Democrats have indulged in for over a decade must stop if we are to beat the Republican machine.

[my real name]
New York City

FRC Propoganda Video

Here. It's enough to make you want to throw eggs at your computer screen.

Friday, March 26, 2004

House DFLer is in Hot Water Over Her Pro-Hate Amendment Vote

This was correspondance forwarded to me from a very unhappy straight constituent of Rebecca Otto's.


There was a group that worked on strategy on this issue, and they did
not offer amendments.


I'd be curious to hear the rest of the brilliant strategy developed by your "leaders" over there. But I'm more interested in YOUR reasons for voting for this abomination. Do you really oppose giving equal rights to gays? Do you really believe that gay marriage will lead to a reordering of society, as your colleague Michele Bachmann believes? Surely you wouldn't vote for something this awful simply for political reasons--to gain a better edge in your re-election campaign--would you?

Your vote was a slap in the face of your core base of support in this district. By voting for this, you have opened the door even wider to the hateful religious extremists who already are trying to take over the district. You have told them: "Not to worry, I'm with you!"

Unfortunately, you will never get their votes no matter what you do on this issue. Your vote in support of bigotry will only cost you the votes and support of the people who put you there in the first place. I already have heard from two people in our district who say they have cast their last vote for you because of this--and that was unsolicited.

And tell this to the Brain Trust back at the House: If this thing passes the Senate and goes on the ballot, it will do two things:
1) Bring out the religious right in droves statewide to vote for the constitutional amendment and against Democrats; and

2) Divert a whole lot of resources--financial and volunteer hours--to DFLers and progressives fighting this thing when that money and time could be spent working for Democrats who actually stuck by their principles.

Neither of those two outcomes might not be a bad idea if it means the House DFL going into an even smaller minority and causes a cleaning of the entire House DFL "leadership." Until that happens, I won't be back.

EY: Matt Entenza, House Minority Leader, got booed at Thursdays Rally for Equality at the Capitol.


From Chuck Muth's News and Views:

“Matthew Shepard (was killed) here in Wyoming, it was good riddance. We should do what the Arabs/Muslims followers of the Koran do to faggots, execute them all, my son included. Faggots are the scum of the earth, filth at it lowest form.”

- News & Views reader who declined to identify himself (or herself), 3/25/04

EY: This one no doubt will go into the Leviticus Files section of the Lawfully Wedded website.

Kudos to the Three Republicans Voting No to the Minnesota Hate Amendment

Kudos to Rep. Ray Cox, Rep. Jim Rhodes and Rep. Ron Erhardt who voted against this amendment when it came to the house floor.

College Republicans criticize Log Cabin Republicans

Hat Tip: Kicking Ass the DNC blog

"President Bush is exactly right when he says there is a consensus among Americans to protect the institution of marriage. Activist judges are creating confusion that requires clarification," said Eric Hoplin, chairman of the College Republican National Committee. "We applaud President Bush's leadership on an issue that is so important to the next generation."

"While I appreciate the work of the Log Cabin Republicans to elect members of our party, their efforts to stab the President in the back, to the tune of a million dollars, shows that they seek to advance a single issue agenda, even if it means working to defeat our commander-in-chief," Hoplin said. "If the Log Cabin Republicans are the loyal Republicans they claim to be, they should spend their millions on electing Republicans, not defeating them."

Ofcourse many in the next generation don't agree with him.

Bachmann Bigoted Amendment Substituted by Betzold version

From the Associated Press.

I'm still trying to figure out how the committee members voted on this bill.

Directly after voting down that amendment, however, the committee approved an alternative offered by Sen. Don Betzold, DFL-Fridley. It would allow voters to instead decide if the constitution should be amended to prohibit the judicial branch from having jurisdiction over defining marriage - that only the Legislature has that power.

``If you want to curb judicial activism, my bill squarely says that,'' Betzold said.

That amendment was approved 5-4, with one Republican and one Democrat crossing party lines in their votes. The bill now goes to the Senate Rules and Administration Committee, which will decide its fate.

Despite the defeat of her own bill, Sen. Michele Bachmann was pleased Betzold's amendment passed.

``The issue remains alive,'' said Bachmann, R-Stillwater.

She said it would be difficult for her to support Betzold's bill because it doesn't define marriage and she fears it could make the issue a political football at the Legislature. But if that bill makes it to the floor, she could try to amend her legislation to it.

Betzold said he's not entirely comfortable with his own bill, but offered it as an alternative in hopes that as long as something was still alive, Bachmann wouldn't offer her bill as an amendment to every other bill that made it to the floor.

``If this bill had died today, that wouldn't have ended the issue,'' Betzold said.

EY: The weak point in the Senate DFL plans has always been how to keep this bill from getting onto the floor. Here's the wording of the Betzold Amendment.

S.F No. 3003, as introduced: 83rd Legislative Session (2003-2004) Posted on Mar 24, 2004

1.1 A bill for an act
1.2 proposing an amendment to the Minnesota Constitution
1.3 by adding a section to article VI; restricting the
1.4 power of the judicial branch to define marriage or its
1.5 equivalent.
1.8 An amendment to the Minnesota Constitution is proposed to
1.9 the people. If the amendment is adopted, a section shall be
1.10 added to article VI, to read:
1.11 Sec. 14. The judicial branch does not have the power to
1.12 direct or require the legislature to define marriage or a legal
1.13 equivalent to marriage such as a civil union between parties.
1.14 The legislature has the sole power to define marriage and
1.15 equivalent civil unions.
1.16 Sec. 2. [QUESTION.]
1.17 The proposed amendment shall be submitted to the people at
1.18 the 2004 general election. The question submitted shall be:
1.19 "Shall the Minnesota Constitution be amended to provide
1.20 that the judicial branch must not direct or require the
1.21 legislature to define marriage or civil unions and that only the
1.22 legislature has this power?
1.23 Yes .......
1.24 No ........"

EY: People need to write their Senators to oppose Senate File 3003. I'm still not sure who voted for this turkey. 4 Dems and 1 Republican in the Judiciary Committee voted for this bill. The Bachmann bill failed in committee on a 5-4 vote.

Here are the authors on this one:

Chief Author: Betzold
Author: Johnson, D.E.
Author: Cohen
Author: Rest
Author: Skoglund

Politics Make Strange Bedfellows

In this case Green Party's Dean Zimmerman is appearing with anti-Transit and anti-gay State Representative Mark Olson.

Zimmermann at last night's Saint Louis Park PRT Meeting. From the Roadkill Bill site:

Yes folks, politics make strange bedfellows...but PRT politics makes really weird bedfellows. Why, just the other day, March 24th to be exact, Minneapolis CouncilPRTson Dean Zimmermann was giving a PowerPoint presentation prepared by the Taxi 20O0 Corporation at the Saint Louis Park City Hall. Zimmermann started his presentation by saying how bored he was representing the 6th Ward at City Hall... I wonder how his constituents and the Green Party feel about his becoming a pitchman for the Taxi 2000 Corporation?

Showing very poor taste and judgement, the Councilman took a jab at the bus system while the transit system is under a Republican siege and bus drivers walk the picket line. He said the #21 bus that goes down Lake Street was too slow and unpopular. "That's why people don't take the bus and drive instead," Dean said. Dean should probably check the statistics before he says stuff like this. Before the lock-out, a lot of people rode the #21. According to Metro Transit, 361,000 people rode the #21 in October, 2003.

When Zimmermann was asked who supported and sponsored PRT legislation at the Capitol, the CouncilPRTson informed the audience that the Republicans were behind PRT because they "wanted lower taxes". Is there any further proof needed to show that Zimmermann's PRT infatuation has put him in bed with the right-wing, anti-abortion, anti-gay, anti-environment, anti-transit, pro-NRA, pro-highway Republicans?

As Russell Raczkowski writes in the Minneapolis Rumors Forum:

Last night I attended a St. Louis Park Green Party forum where 6th Ward councilperson Dean Zimmermann made his pitch for PRT. His 68 station PRT plan notwithstanding, it seems to me that what this is all about is a government
subsidy of a test track facility for the Taxi 2000 corporation.

If I understood Dean correctly, the funding formula as contained in a current bill under consideration in the legislature is as follows: $12 million from the State of Minnesota, $6 million from the Taxi 2000 corporaton, AND $6 MILLION FROM THE HOSTING MUNICIPALITY. That would be us, folks, if that facility was built in Minneapolis. Dean mentioned the Seward "industrial area" as a possible location.

Why a test facility? Because PRT, as designed by Taxi 2000, has never been built anywhere on the planet.

I have just discovered that the city council is conducting "a study session" of PRT tomorrow at 9AM. Dean Z. claimed that he has support of 7 of the 13 councilmembers.

I'd suggest that we start paying attention real quick, or we will see $6 million in city bucks and $18 million in state funds going to a test facility for a dubious transit technology as our present transit system is shut down because transit workers want to keep their current healthcare coverage.

To my mind, something ain't quite right with this picture.

Russell Raczkowski

Yep, $6 Million in City funds for a Test Track.

In Cardiff Wales, they had the good sense to not fund a similar deal.

Tuesday, March 23, 2004

Bigots Rally at the Capitol

According to the Pioneer Press, one of the rally signs said: Death Penalty for Homosexuals! Lovely huh!

According to the Star Tribune Senate Majority Leader, Dean Johnson was disturbed by the mean spiritedness of the rally:

Johnson, who said he heard one prayer in the rotunda condemning all homosexuals to hell, said the anger of some of the demonstrators reduced his office staff to tears.

Johnson described some of the rally-goers as the most vicious and mean-spirited he has ever heard in his elected career.

"This is more about politics and certifying right-wing conservative credentials for the 2004 election," Johnson said afterward.

Good for Dean Johnson for calling it like he sees it.

Meanwhile at the St Paul Issues list, discussion continues on Dave Thune's motion to have the city council go on record opposing this amendment.

Gay Days in Rhea County?

from a post to USA Queers...

As promised, the web site is now up. Thanks to one of the group members who emailed me some artwork and a slogan we have a t-shirt and other merchandise up for sale. We are going to split any profits from sales between GFRO and gay organizations in Tennessee.

I would greatly appreciate content contributions and other t-shirt designs. I put the web site together is about an hour, which was all the time I had available, so it is very rough and unprofessional but it get the message across. I will continue to improve it when I have the time. Any help with this would be greatly appreciated.

Please spread the word especially to the media. If we can get some well placed national coverage we can both raise money and be an example for any other counties in America that think they can legislate discrimination against the GLBT community.

The website is located at:

Monday, March 22, 2004

Ironic that I get this email

The purpose of this group is pretty straightfoward. I envision this to be a vehicle to raise grassroots support for the Federal Marriage Amendment. As you know, there is an ongoing campaign by the gay activists, judicial tyrants and their partners in crime, the liberal media to overturn centuries of marriage law and customs.

This Judicial Activism nonsense is a straw man. Scalia is the most Activist Judge I know of - but since he supports the far right on every issue, he's not a judicial activist. If the bigots were really concerned about Judicial Activism - the amendment would be the Judicial Activism Amendment. But that's not what they are about. This amendment is all about pandering to bigots.

This issue fundamentally affects us all. That is why for the first time in my life, I have decided to take the plunge into political activism. The fight to save traditional marriage is one that is most definitely worth the fight.

Then why not be concerned about divorce, adultery or other things that destroy marriages? How does the possibility of gay marriage weaken the institution of marriage?

Some believe that his own state is protected against gay marriage, since currently 38 states have either amended their constitutions or passed laws to prohibit the recognition of laws from other states. And the Congress itself
passed the Defense of Marriage Act back in 1996. These are all positive things, but it is not enough to stop an out of control
judicial branch. As things stand now, the gay activists and unelected, unaccountable, liberal judges have *all* the power to do as they see fit. We've seen recently in Massachusetts how a bare majority of the Supreme Court interpreted the state constitution written by John Adams in the 1700's as mandating same sex marriage. If a state constitution can be shredded with impunity, it leaves the door open for more of the same.

Then why not criticize the recent Supreme Court Decisions on Affirmative Action? Isn't that overturning the will of the people? The real concern here is to prevent gays from using the court system.

What happens in one state affects us all. Because of the "full faith and credit clause" in the U.S. Constitution, the gay activists have legal grounds to demand that every other state recognize their same sex marriage. Yes, there are state laws and state constitutions that prohibit that. But that only means that the battle will move to Federal Courts. Once the Feds get their hands on it, they are free to overturn *any* law or state constitutional amendment from any state. In the end, if SCOTUS is bent on creating gay marriage,they will do it and there is seemingly nothing we can do to stop it.

In other words you want to stop any state from allowing gay marriage within their state. There's no evidence that other states have to recognise marriages performed in other states.

Not so fast. Congresswoman Marilyn Musgrave (R-CO) has introduced H.J. Res 56, the Federal Marriage Amendment. What this amendment does is codify into the U.S. Constitution (in a way the courts can't touch) the time honored definition of marriage as a union of one man and one woman. It would invalidate any potential statutes in any state that would allow same sex marriage, while at the same time leaving it up to the states (as opposed to being mandated by the courts) the issue of civil unions.

Ofcourse it's a lie that the Musgrave amendment would allow for states to offer civil unions. The wording of the amendment clearly prohibits this - and the author of the wording said he intended this to prohibit civil unions as well as gay marriage.

Fellow patriots,it will take a lot of work to get this amendment passed. If you are interested in joining the fight, I respectfully request that you join this group. It's time make your voice heard abd prevent this brazen attempt to redefine the sacred institution of marriage.

This should read: Fellow Bigots..... There's nothing patriotic about wanting to put anti-gay graffitti on the constitution.

May God bless you all, and may God always bless America.

Lee Housley
Houston, Texas

This is for the yahoogroup FMA_Support. As I said it was rather ironic that I got an invitation to join this one.

Dave Thune Will Author St Paul City Council Resolution to Oppose Anti-Gay Amendment to the Minnesota Constitution

From the St Paul Issues list by Dave Thune

Okay, we'll make it official.
It has been suggested that the St. Paul City Council go on record opposing the anti-family legislation masquerading as the anti-gay marriage ammendment.

I'll author it, who wants to talk about it?

st. Paul city council ward 2

Thanks Dave Thune for stepping up to the plate on this one. The hearing on this bill in the Senate is on Friday. I think the more city leaders take public positions against this amendment - which is writing discrimination into the state constitution - the better.

Having the St Paul City Council go on record opposing this amendment is one way to help kill this attack on the gay community at the legislature.

Now when will a council critter in Minneapolis do the same?