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08/29/2012

If there is a political takeaway from Ann Romney's speech, it belongs to marriage equality advocates

by Jeremy Hooper

Most of the pundits seem to agree: Ann Romney's Republican Convention speech was largely about the man she loves. I agree and applaud her for it. Hopefully we are not so cynical in our politics that it blinds us from congratulating those who are lucky enough to find and form a strong, loving bond.

But if the pundits are right and Ann Romney's speech was a largely emotional take (and again, I think it was), then I would argue that it's marriage equality activists who have the most salient political point to make. Why so I say that? Well, because Mitt Romney, you will remember, has signed on to this truly chilling document:

Screen Shot 2012-05-09 At 5.40.30 Pm-1
[Romney Affirms Support for National Organization For Marriage Pledge]

For people like me, who are in our own "real" marriages that just so happen to involve counterparts of the same gender, our easy joy for the Romneys' forty-three year union can't help but be somewhat muted or at least tempered by what we see above. We may want to applaud the kind of love that transcends politics. We might want to watch one speech that sidesteps the usual talking points, seeing it as a nice, human respite in a night of partisan politicking. But in the back of our minds, we know that this man—Ann's husband, presidential hopeful, and GOP standard-bearer—has made an explicit vow to halt any further expansion of our rights (at best) and even take away our currently-legal marriages (at logical worst). That's scary.

Many of us would like nothing more than to sit back, carb-filled snack in ring-adorned hand, and get mushy alongside Ms. Romney. Unfortunately, some of us must still fight to even have our own sweet stories, much less share them. And the cold, hard truth is that Willard Mitt Romney has pledged to make that fight even harder for us and our families.

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**RELATED: What the 'real' Romney marriage can teach Americans about marriage equality (yes, really) [G-A-Y]

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