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Honeymoon at the Washington monument, stay to see the big erection

by Jeremy Hooper

David-CataniaToday's the day that D.C. Councilman David Catania will introduce a bill that would bring marriage equality to the District. And the good news: It doesn't look like the U.S. Congress is going to get in the way of the progress:

Democrats and Republicans on Capitol Hill said it appears unlikely that Congress will block a bill to be introduced Tuesday that would allow same-sex marriages in the District.

D.C. Council leaders have vowed to expedite the bill and said they hope to put it to a final vote before Christmas.
D.C. to Introduce Same-Sex Marriage Bill [WaPo]

Now, even if Catania's bill passes as expected, this doesn't mean that Congress won't futz with it in the future. Should the balance of power shift in the future, a conservative House and Senate could be all like, "Hey, you know those D.C. gays who have been marrying without incident? Yea, let's mess with their lives for the sole sake of political gain. Then we can go have a beer to celebrate the way we've crushed our gay neighbors' souls and estranged their families, just so that we could appease the 'pro-family' Gods. Bwaa ha ha ha ha!" Or something like that.

But let's not think about that frightening, hurtful, discriminatory, un-American possibility for now. For now, let's watch Mr. Catania do what's right rather than what's far-right!

**UPDATE: HRC Backstory has some on-site coverage.

**UPDATE2: Washington Blade brings video of the bill's introduction, and a short clip of opponent Harry Jackson: Video: Yes We Catania [G-A-Y]

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Your thoughts

Oh wow, I forgot that this was going to happen this week! For a recently-green-carded immigrant who plans to live with his boyfriend in DC the rest of his life, this is huge news.

Posted by: DN | Oct 6, 2009 12:18:58 PM

I was only loosely following how things become law in DC back when they passed equality for out of state marriages, but isn't there a window during which Congress can act on this passage? So like, after 30 days or so, it would become law. Would Congress be able to overturn that law without the DC council acting first?

Posted by: Bruno | Oct 6, 2009 2:49:48 PM

Yes, I think that's right - 30 days. However, DC being a federal entity with no real power, Congress can and does push the city around a lot.

When something as trivial as renaming Washington National Airport to Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport, congress threatened to withhold the entire federal portion of the DC Metro budget until every sign and route map was changed. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reagan_national_airport see Renaming Controversy)

Posted by: DN | Oct 6, 2009 4:04:19 PM

Well, I think the Congresspeople are more likely to act when something directly affects their tender sensibilities...like, an airport's name. Hopefully this particular Congress isn't too interested, and future ones as well.

Posted by: Bruno | Oct 6, 2009 5:30:59 PM

I just call it National Airport. I personally refuse to call it by it's recent official and idiotic Congress-mandated name change. The conservative congress people pushing this insane idea do not reflect ever the way I as an American view this. I refuse to bow before Ronald Reagan and before this useless name change and before those congress people who rammed this down the Washington, DC metropolitan area's collective throat. To me, it's always has been for the 44 years I have lived here in the DC area and will always remain National Airport and nothing else.

Posted by: Morgan | Oct 7, 2009 4:57:46 AM

Congress can and does push the city around a lot. That is why I live in a currently somewhat progressive neighboring state called Maryland and not in a federal city. Much as I like the city of Washington, DC. For that very reason. And I like the peace and quiet of my suburban home and neighborhood.

Since Marylanders sent our antigay, GOP governor Ehrlich packing for the time being, Maryland has improved a bit.

Posted by: Morgan | Oct 7, 2009 5:05:54 AM

I agree with you Morgan, and I use my boyfriend's status as a born & raised 202'er to claim DC status myself :)

As such, I have no compunction about calling out the DC carpetbaggers like Brian Brown who claim to represent DC issues, but are really just there for a few years to advance their agenda, and then poof! heard from no more...

Posted by: DN | Oct 15, 2009 1:41:12 AM

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