Posted by AzBlueMeanie:
The Arizona Republic's AZ/DC blog today published second quarter fundraising numbers in the new CD 2, AZ/DC Blog - Quick look at fundraising reports:
Incumbent Rep. Ron Barber, D-Ariz., raised $333,000, with cash on hand of $195,000, blowing past his Democratic primary challenger state Rep. Matt Heinz. . . Heinz reported donations of $34,000, with cash on hand of $42,000.
Ouch! Heinz received most of his donations in the last two weeks of June after the Special Election, and after Ron Barber cast a couple of inexplicable votes for which he has been roundly criticized by Democrats.
Which may explain the press release today from his opponent, Matt Heinz, trying to manufacture outrage (for fundraising purposes) where I believe "outrage" is unwarranted in this instance, especially since this story is from last week -- suspect timing given the above report:
CD2 CANDIDATE DR. HEINZ: BARBER FAILS TO STAND UP FOR MARRIAGE EQUALITY
Tucson, Ariz. – July 16, 2012 – Dr. Matt Heinz, an openly gay congressional candidate for Arizona’s newly formed 2nd District and a two-term state legislator, releases the following statement about recent legal and political actions taken on the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA):
“The Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) of 1996 has flagrantly discriminated against the rights of the LGBT community for the last fifteen years,” expressed Heinz. “Republicans legislate insufferable sentiments against our community while attempting to legitimize these laws in court. It was only last week when I spoke out against Governor Jan Brewer’s reprehensible appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court to uphold her attacks on domestic partnerships. Now, Republicans serving in the U.S. House of Representatives filed an appeal of the 9th Circuit Court’s ruling that section 3 of DOMA is unconstitutional.”
“It is inexcusable for Congressman Ron Barber (D-Ariz.) to not stand in solidarity with the 132 House Democrats who submitted an amicus brief to the 9th Circuit Court in support of Karen Golinski. Karen filed suit as an effort to extend coverage of her Federal Employee Health Benefits to her spouse. Karen, like so many other married same-sex couples, continues to be the excluded from basic coverage by policies like DOMA.”
Heinz expressed, “I pay homage to Karen for defending the recognition of her familial structure. Her efforts for equality will not only affect the ability of her spouse to be added as a beneficiary, it will safeguard the rights of every LGBT community member who decides to enter into marriage.”
“According to the U.S. Census in 2010, the United States had 131,729 same-sex married couples,” explained Heinz. “The same section in DOMA preventing Karen from providing security to her family, also affects the social security benefits for all married same-sex couples. Locally, in our southern Arizona town of Bisbee, there are more same-sex couples than anywhere in our state.”
“I agree with legal arguments in the House Democrat’s amicus brief that states ‘a driving force behind this law was the desire to disapprove and disadvantage gay and lesbian couples, which is not a legitimate federal interest’,” Heinz implored, “We must have elected representation that will fight against the malicious intent of laws that inflict direct harm on married same-sex couples.”
“The Defensive of Marriage Act has limited legal defined equality for far too long. Our nation must not tolerate this law any longer. Equality must be achieved among all Americans.”
The Huffington Post reported last week, Nancy Pelosi And House Democrats File Brief Supporting DOMA Repeal In California Court:
Led by Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), 132 House Democrats filed a brief in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals on Tuesday arguing that the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) is discriminatory and unconstitutional.
In the brief, which was filed in the case of Golinski v. U.S. Office of Personnel Management, the members of Congress argued that DOMA "lacks a rational relationship to any legitimate federal purpose and accordingly is unconstitutional." Karen Golinski, a federal employee who is married to another woman, launched the suit to force the federal government to give her spouse the same benefits afforded to heterosexual couples.
BuzzFeed reported Democrats Fight DOMA In Court -- But 60 Stay Home:
But 60 Democratic members from across the country, many representing contested districts or relatively conservative regions, did not join the brief. Not signing on to the brief, however, does not necessarily signal support for DOMA. Twenty of the 60, for example, have signed on as co-sponsors of the Respect for Marriage Act, a bill pending in Congress to repeal DOMA.
The Huffingtonpost noted "The high-profile brief carries greater political risk than the bill, which has advanced to the Senate floor but has little prospect of passing in the GOP-led House."
The Respect For Marriage Act, HR 1116 (and S. 598) was introduced on March 16, 2011. Bill Summary & Status Search Results - THOMAS (Library of Congress).
"Not signing on to the brief, however, does not necessarily signal support for DOMA." I have never heard Ron Barber say that he supports DOMA, or that he does not support full marriage equality. It is disingenuous to suggest otherwise simply because Barber did not sign on to the amicus brief.
While one could fairly argue it demonstrates an abundance of caution on Barber's part in a swing district, it is manufactured outrage to deem it "inexcusable." If the Respect For Marriage Act ever came up for a vote in the Tea-Publican controlled House, I have no reason to believe that Ron Barber would not vote for it. I am confident Ron Barber agrees with your position, Dr. Heinz. I am sure you are too.
Moreover, the First Circuit Court of Appeals has already ruled DOMA unconstitutional in May. This is going to the Supreme Court next term. There will be time for more amicus briefs.