Maddow to same sex couples: ‘Just get married’ whether it’s legal or not

By David Ferguson
Saturday, October 19, 2013 11:08 EDT
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Maddow on Jersey same sex marriage
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On Friday night’s edition of “The Rachel Maddow Show,” Rachel Maddow discussed a tactic that is being used by same sex marriage advocates in New Jersey, and which has proved to be effective in other parts of the country. Same sex couples have been marrying while the legality of their marriages is still being worked out in the courts, a tactic that has proven effective in moving marriage laws forward in several states.

Maddow was joined by New Jersey Democratic gubernatorial candidate State Sen. Barbara Buono. The two discussed current Gov. Chris Christie’s stubborn resistance to same sex marriage, even as those marriages move forward in his state.

Maddow began the segment by explaining that in Asbury Park, NJ, the town clerk has started handing out marriage licenses to same sex couples. Asbury Park was once a run-down, nearly abandoned town well past its boom years, but an influx of LGBT people, artists and new businesses have caused the town to boom anew.

“And that is great for the residents of Asbury Park,” Maddow said. And while these couples who are marrying, she explained, are individual families, they are part of a tactic that has proved effective for marriage equality advocates.

“While marriage rights are still being adjudicated,” Maddow said, “just get married. It has an effect.”

She recounted that in 2004, San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom up and announced that he was going to start marrying same sex couples in his city. That action, she said, “strapped a turbo-charge” to the drive toward marriage equality in California. Public officials did the same in New York state and other states where same sex marriage is now legal.

Maddow said that these acts of civil disobedience have been “a surprisingly effective direct-action tactic” toward LGBT people getting marriage rights.

Newly elected Sen. Corey Booker has made a similar announcement, in spite of the fact that Gov. Chris Christie has made his opposition to same sex marriage very plain.

Maddow welcomed Christie’s challenger, Barbara Buono to the show, who agreed that Christie was staking out a losing position on marriage equality, but that this isn’t a new course of action for him.

“The governor has a history of using his office to advance his own political interests,” Buono said. Not only is he off the mark on social issues, she told Maddow, “his economic plan really has just enriched the wealthy and crippled the middle class.”

Watch the video, embedded below via MSNBC:

David Ferguson
David Ferguson
David Ferguson is an editor at Raw Story. He was previously writer and radio producer in Athens, Georgia, hosting two shows for Georgia Public Broadcasting and blogging at Firedoglake.com and elsewhere. He is currently working on a book.
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