Discrimination on Other Fronts

Though the final word is not in yet, the great, great disappointment last night is the blow to equal rights in California in the form of proposition 8, and bans on same-sex marriage in other states.  In the San Francisco Chronicle:

Opponents of the measure, gathered at the Westin St. Francis Hotel in San Francisco, tried to put the best face on the disappointing results.

“There are a lot of votes still to count, and we expect the race to go on late tonight and possibly beyond,” said Geoff Kors, executive director of Equality California, the guiding force behind the “No on Prop. 8” campaign.

Election officials estimated there could be as many as 2 million ballots left to count after election day, mainly from mail ballots that arrived Tuesday.

Supporters of the ban stayed cautiously optimistic.

“We’re confident voters did go to the polls to vote ‘yes’ to protect traditional marriage,” said Chip White, a spokesman for the Prop. 8 campaign.

Same-sex marriage bans won easily Tuesday night in Florida and Arizona. It was a rematch in Arizona, which in 2006 became the only state to ever reject a ban on same-sex marriage.

The campaign in California pitted those who argued that a same-sex marriage ban was nothing more than outdated discrimination against gays and lesbians, and conservatives and Christian groups who countered that the state and the courts have no right to unilaterally change a definition of marriage that has existed for centuries.