The bill that would effectively legalize same-sex marriage nationwide is sailing along. As expected, a key procedural vote was held on Wednesday, and it succeeded 62-37. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) hopes to finish the job before leaving for Thanksgiving, but Republican foot-dragging could push the final vote into December.
All 50 Democrats voted in favor of the bill. Joining them were 12 Republicans; we bet you can guess some of them, while others are a bit of a surprise. Here are the 12: Susan Collins (ME), Rob Portman (OH), Thom Tillis (NC), Roy Blunt (MO), Richard Burr (NC), Shelley Moore Capito (WV), Cynthia Lummis (WY), Lisa Murkowski (AK), Mitt Romney (UT), Dan Sullivan (AK), Todd Young (IN) and Joni Ernst (IA). That's the most moderate members of the conference, the members who are retiring, and a few folks (like Lummis, Young and Ernst) who have solid libertarian streaks. Though one wonders what is going on with Rand Paul (KY), who at least claims to be a fan of small government. Maybe he's only a libertarian when we're talking about the rules for mowing one's lawn.
We should point out, incidentally, that the bill does not require states to legalize same-sex marriage. However, it does require them to recognize same-sex marriages performed in other states. So, deep red states can keep up the pretense that, as far as they are concerned, marriage is between a man and a woman. However, the LGBTQ+ citizens of those states can just have a destination wedding in a blue state, or can head off to Las Vegas for a weekend and get married by an Elvis impersonator. Then, their marriage is legal when they get back home. (Z)