Mitt Romney’s campaign seemed to flip-flop last week on whether he supports an amendment to the U.S. Constitution banning same-sex marriage, but the convoluted clarification demonstrated that his positions on the issue are purely political and as insensitive as ever. After last week’s debate, campaign senior adviser Bay Buchanan told The Advocate that Romney opposes marriage equality, but that “it’s a state issue” and that Romney “would not get in the way of what states decide to do on marriage and adoption.” As Buzzfeed pointed out, this seemed very much to conflict with the candidate’s pledge to pass a federal marriage amendment and institute a three-tier system, allowing married same-sex couples to stay married, but not new couples to get married. Buchanan clarified on Saturday that Romney does still support such an amendment.
"Governor Romney supports a federal marriage amendment to the Constitution that defines marriage as an institution between a man and a woman," said Buchanan. "Governor Romney also believes, consistent with the 10th Amendment, that it should be left to states to decide whether to grant same-sex couples certain benefits, such as hospital visitation rights and the ability to adopt children."
So yesterday the Romney campaign not only reiterated its support for amending the US Constitution to ban same-sex marriage, which would result in the forcible divorce of tens of thousands of legally-married same-sex couples in seven states and the District of Columbia, the Romney camp also described a gay man's ability to be at his husband's bedside during a medical emergency as a "benefit"—a little treat, a special favor—and not a right. Same goes for you dykes. If candidate Mitt Romney believes that the states should decide if gays and lesbians can enjoy the "benefit" of hospital visitation rights, then a President Romney will have to rescind a 2010 executive order signed by President Obama that requires all hospitals that receive federal funds—and that's all hospitals—to recognize same-sex relationships and treat same-sex partners as family members and next-of-kin.
When a loved one is in the hospital, you naturally want to be at the bedside. But what if the staff won’t allow it? That’s what Janice Langbehn, a social worker in Lacey, Wash., says she experienced when her partner of 18 years, Lisa Pond, collapsed with an aneurysm during a Florida vacation and was taken to a Miami trauma center. She died there, at age 39, as Ms. Langbehn tried in vain to persuade hospital officials to let her visit, along with the couple’s adopted children.... Ms. Langbehn says that a hospital social worker informed her that she was in an “antigay city and state” and that she would need a health care proxy to get information.... Despite repeated requests to see her partner, Ms. Langbehn says she was given just one five-minute visit, when a priest administered last rites. She says she continued to plead with a hospital worker that the children be allowed to see their mother, even showing the children’s birth certificates. “I said to the receptionist, ‘Look, they’re her kids,’ ” Ms. Langbehn said.
Lisa Pond was conscious when she was admitted to the trauma center. By the time her spouse and children were allowed to see her, Lisa Pond was brain dead. Pond's children and Pond's spouse were prevented from saying goodbye to her—no last words, no final embraces, no one there to hold Pond's hand and say "I love you" to her as she lay dying. Yesterday Mitt Romney promised to return us to this: hospitals in "anti-gay states" having the power to inflict unnecessary emotional pain on dying queers and their spouses. Under a President Romney children will be prevented from saying goodbye to their dying parents—if their parents are gay or lesbian and unlucky enough to fall ill in "anti-gay states."
"The Log Cabin Republicans have proven once and for all that they are not an organization aligned with the LGBT movement. They are a Republican front group bumbling their way into fooling LGBT voters that it's OK to support a party that would legislate us back into the closet. Their endorsement of Mitt Romney isn't just shameful—it's insulting.... It's reprehensible. Have they no decency?"—Jerame Davis, executive director of the National Stonewall Democrats.