Scheiber, Noam
February 2004
New Republic;2/23/2004, Vol. 230 Issue 6, p9
This article presents a commentary on how John Kerry may choose his position on same-sex marriage. The Washington Post reports that John Kerry is considering--or at least refusing to rule out--supporting an amendment to the Massachusetts constitution outlawing gay marriage. The Republicans have made no secret of their plans to attack Kerry as a Massachusetts liberal during this fall's campaign. He isn't likely to be helped by the fact that the Democratic National Convention will take place in Boston--at a time when gay men and women may be flocking to the state to take advantage of its recent supreme court ruling on gay marriage. Worse, the one counterexample Kerry supporters tend to point to when confronted with this rap is Kerry's courageous opposition to the Defense of Marriage Act in 1996, which he derided as politically motivated "gay-bashing." For Kerry, the gay marriage issue puts his two biggest weaknesses in direct conflict with one another--whichever way he decides to go, his decision risks crystallizing a major character flaw in a way that's likely to define him for the duration of the campaign.


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