Tea Party Reaches New Low In Pettiness

By Amanda Marcotte
Monday, February 17, 2014 10:21 EDT
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Ted Cruz speaks to Fox News Sunday
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Am I the only one who thinks Ted Cruz permanently looks like he’s about to cry?

Republicans are really starting to get comically petty in their attempts to stall and chip away at same-sex marriage. Sen. Mike Lee and Sen. Ted Cruz introduced a bill that would basically nullify your same-sex marriage in federal eyes if you moved from a state where it was legal to a state where it wasn’t. Right now, if you get married in New York and move to Texas, for instance, the federal government will still recognize your marriage for federal benefit purposes. This is as it should be, not only because it’s right, but because the Constitution has strong protections for keeping contracts legal across state lines. It also avoids a major paperwork nightmare—not many federal laws change from one state to another for this very good reason. But the desire to make that lives of gay people harder trumps basic common sense and the supposed conservative hostility to complex federal regulations. But Cruz claims some kind of damage is being done to straight people in red states if gay people get to have Social Security checks mailed to them.

CRUZ: I support traditional marriage. Under President Obama, the federal government has tried to re-define marriage, and to undermine the constitutional authority of each state to define marriage consistent with the values of its citizens. The Obama Administration should not be trying to force gay marriage on all 50 states. We should respect the states, and the definition of marriage should be left to democratically elected legislatures, not dictated from Washington. This bill will safeguard the ability of states to preserve traditional marriage for its residents.

Emphasis from Think Progress. So here’s what Cruz is actually, in the real world, trying to argue: That straight couples will have their lives and their “traditional” marriages irreparably damaged if gay couples get veteran’s benefits and Social Security and the ability to file taxes as married couples. A gay couple can move in next door to you and call themselves married and even have a marriage certificate from another state, but the thing that will break you and your “traditional” patriarchal marriage that is focused on woman-oppression instead of egalitarian love is how that couple gets to file their taxes. Okay, sure.

The most amazing thing about the Tea Party, aka the same old religious right dressed in new clothes, is how fucking petty they really are. It’s almost awe-inspiring sometimes.

Amanda Marcotte
Amanda Marcotte
Amanda Marcotte is a freelance journalist born and bred in Texas, but now living in the writer reserve of Brooklyn. She focuses on feminism, national politics, and pop culture, with the order shifting depending on her mood and the state of the nation.
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