Monday, December 21, 2015

Secretary Clinton is Correct - A Republican POTUS would try to roll back LGBT advances

Saturday night at the Democratic presidential debate, Hillary Clinton said that a Republican president would put gay rights in jeopardy. She is probably correct. These Republican candidates are people who are heavily invested in defining Free Exercise as the right to discriminate. They go to the “victim” rallies of the bakers and the florist, never demonstrating even empathy for people who are illegally denied service. Some of them rallied with Kim Davis. They associate, and appear with, pastors with extreme views; Some of whom claim that gay people should be murdered by the state.

Some wonder if these politicians have anti-gay beliefs or if they are just cynics pandering for a vote. I would ask if it matters. Whether it is belief or an eventual policy-debt owed to the Christian right is irrelevant. Either way, we potentially suffer.

I have been writing for some time that even if a Republican is elected who nominates conservative justices for the Supreme Court, they are still not going to be able to overturn Objergefell v. Hodges. That requires a new case to make its way through the federal courts by someone with standing — Someone who can demonstrate that they have been injured as a direct result of same-sex marriage.

It's a nearly impossible hurdle. However, do we really need the anxiety of re-litigating marriage equality? Why would we want to redo any of the advances that we have made? They might want to reinstate Don't-Ask-Don't-Tell. They would unravel executive orders requiring that government contractors extend sexuality fairness to the workplace.

The LGBT community has made a commitment to the Ts. President Obama even has a transgender outreach and recruitment director for presidential personnel in the Office of Personnel. Overall we are winning some and we are losing some. Every win advances equality and fairness. Can we risk a president weighing in on “bathroom bills?”

My biggest fear is that disaffected Bernie Sanders supporters won't show up. At least one idiot at Salon thinks that the DNC has to be taught a lesson with a write-in for Bernie. It reminds me of the Ralph Nader imbeciles who gave us George W. Bush. Bernie is no Ralph Nader. He is a serious candidate who has moved Clinton to the left. I love Bernie but he is probably not going to be the Democratic nominee. We need Bernie's supporters to rally for Clinton. We need the energy of those millennials to prevent another GW Bush disaster. Perhaps Senator Sanders will find himself in the Clinton cabinet with a strong influence on domestic policy.

Forget LGBT rights for a moment. The lower the tax rate for the super-wealthy, the less they are going to do in the way of job development. I am over-simplifying but since Reagan we have eliminated the spread between corporate and personal tax rates (personal rates were considerably higher). George W. Bush did us in with artificial capital gains schemes. Money flows to the lower tax rate which means obscene incentive plans. Yacht builders are doing rather well I suspect.

The reason that the equities markets are so robust has nothing to do with the health of American business. Rather, it is the fact that interest rates are too low. The Fed has allowed the prime rate to hover at 3.25% for more than seven years. Furthermore, with the demise of the Glass-Steagall act, the debt and equity markets are now in common control which means that they no longer compete with each other. Money has flowed out of banks and into the stock markets creating abstract value.

President Obama has failed to make some crucial decisions on the economy. The supply-side crackpots have created an enormous problem that has to be addressed. Electing another is probably not going to solve any problems.

The Republican establishment seems to be coalescing around Marco Rubio, the Tea Party Pretty Boy. Remarkably, Rubion would represent best case for LGBT citizens. Rubio is my junior senator and he seems rather dull. His handlers have him carefully scripted. He is also ready and willing to participate in any anti-LGBT activity. In 2012, Rubio's standard boilerplate on marriage equality and DOMA was:
Marco Rubio
While I respect the rights of all individuals, I believe marriage to be a divine institution where a man and woman resolve with mutual love and respect to live together as husband and wife, and must adhere to applicable laws and conform to civil ceremonies that may be required. As a United States Senator, I will work to defend Acts of Congress and preserve the legal definition of marriage.
Need I say that whether or not marriage is a “divine institution” should be irrelevant to lawmakers? Rubio opposes gay couples adopting children as well. Rubio is a sometime Catholic, sometime Baptist, onetime Mormon and full time conservative Christian.

Two years ago Marco Rubio keynoted an event for an anti-gay hate group, Florida Family Policy Council run by an anti-gay extremist, John Stemberger. The purpose of the event was to give an award to the unhinged Mat Staver, head of the anti-gay hate group, Liberty Counsel. Rubio allowed his name and image to be used to promote the event.

Compared to Trump and Cruz, Rubio seems marginally sane, almost moderate. Nevertheless Rubio is a staunchly anti-LGBT Republican. Rubio might be what we get if our voters stay home. It is how we ended up with the most offensive governor in the nation, Rick Scott, getting a second term. We have less than eleven months to get our act together.

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