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Put a fork in it

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“This is the end of the road for now. We’re sad it’s not going to be on there, but we’ve decided not to challenge the court’s decision anymore.”
— Former Illinois Family Institute head Porno Pete LaBarbera on the final smackdown of his state marriage referendum effort

Pop the champagne corks for another humiliating defeat for the holy rolling morality patrol. Illinois is not ready to fall under the control of the fundamentalists — the referendum will not be on the ballot and the Right has given up till 2008.

Peter says “hundreds of thousands of dollars” have been flushed down the crapper on fundie efforts for the referendum. (STL Today):

Proponents of the Protect Marriage Illinois initiative say they have given up and won’t challenge a federal appeals court ruling last week that effectively scuttled their movement. The court’s decision upheld a dismissal of a lawsuit this summer that alleged Illinois’ election laws were overly burdensome and unfairly nixed a ballot question asking voters whether Illinois needs a constitutional amendment to permanently bar same-sex couples from tying the knot.

…The appellate decision was the third blow to the movement. Previously, the state Board of Elections threw out the referendum because, among other things, a sampling showed the petitions would likely have fewer than 260,000 valid signatures, short of the 283,000 required. The group had turned in some 347,000 initially.

…”They lost every step of the way,” said Rick Garcia, political director for Equality Illinois, which spent some $150,000 itself fighting the referendum.

…It had largely been a push by the conservative activists in Illinois politics, receiving heavy support – including some $400,000 – from Jack Roeser, who heads the conservative advocacy group Family Taxpayers Network. Roeser and other ardent conservatives have been critical of mainstream Republicans for not joining the fight. “They weren’t any help at all,” Roeser said. “They’ve ran away from this thing.”

Gee, I wonder why? Illinois pols are laughing at you all. State Treasurer Judy Baar Topinka, who is the GOP’s candidate for governor, opposed the referendum and courts the gay vote. These homo-obsessed folks in that state have nowhere to go. Illinois is well on its way to becoming the “Massachusetts of the Midwest,” according to Pete, so he better keep those chaps at the ready and a Steamworks membership card up to date for further “research.”

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Pam Spaulding

Pam Spaulding