Several commentators have noted the GOP’s muted response to Judge Vaughn Walker’s decision overturning Proposition 8 and argued that Republicans must be more interested in attracting independent voters with messages about the economy and job creation than re-energizing the base with social issues like abortion and same-sex marriage. But today, a small group of conservative lawmakers signaled that they’re not done fighting the so-called culture wars.
At a press conference this afternoons, Reps. Lamar Smith (R-TX), Steve King (R-IA), Michelle Bachmann (R-MN) and John Fleming (R-LA) introduced a sense of the House resolution accusing Walker of failing “to conduct himself in an impartial manner before striking down California’s popularly enacted Proposition 8.” “Chief United States District Judge Vaughn R. Walker’s decision to strike down California’s popularly enacted Proposition 8 is wrong and should be appealed,” the resolution states.
Some highlights from the news conference:
REP. STEVE KING (R-IA): “We are able to challenge the decisions of these judges and we must. If this nation does not rise up then we’ve capitulated to the judges and it’s they tyranny of the courts. Our founding fathers did not envision that there would be such awe of people with black robes that we would suspend our reason….I would be very happy to take whatever steps, however bold, to reverse it .”
REP. MICHELE BACHMANN (R-MN): “If Walker says that Proposition 8 in California does not survive the rational basis test, then we need to ask ourselves this question, is he implying then that the majority of California voters who voted for this measure themselves aren’t rational when they took this vote on Proposition 8?“
Of course, the Supreme Court is a equal branch of government and is constitutionally required to review laws. And as Ted Olson — one of the lawyers who fought against Prop 8 — explained to Chris Wallace on Sunday, since the Court has previously ruled that marriage is a “fundamental right,” voters can’t deprive minority groups of their constitutionally guaranteed protections. [H/T: Good As You]