lip service

3 Rhode Island Gubernatorial Candidates Will Commit to Gay Marriage. OK, Then What?

If elected governor of Rhode Island, three candidates hoping to replace the termed-out heterosexist Gov. Don Carcieri promise to support marriage equality. But what does “support” mean?

Attorney General Patrick Lynch (pictured) and General Treasurer Frank Caprio (both Democrats) and former Sen. Lincoln Chafee (an independent) have agreed to sign a pledge drafted by Marriage Equality Rhode Island saying they’re on board for marriage equality. (John Robitaille, a Republican candidate, hasn’t responded to MERI, though his office says he never received its calls.)

That is: awesome. It is also: the definition of lip service.

And without further promised action, Marriage Equality Rhode Island might actually be helping these candidates secure the gay voting bloc without actually having to make good on their commitment. Or at least give it much thought during the election, like how they’ll work with state legislators to generate suport.

It’s like walking into a car dealership offering one of those “sign and drive” leases. Just put your pen to paper, and everyone gets behind you, even if you plan on returning — or totaling — the car three weeks after driving it off the lot.

Given the situation in Rhode Island, where Carcieri remains a rabid foe to gay rights, and lawmakers have been punting on the issue for years, it’s easy to see the move as a success. But we’ve been here before, and we’ll be here again, unless we’re willing to demand more than campaign promises.

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  • Sam

    You know what would be awesome? If Queerty EVER did any research on the topics they write about. Polls consistently show 55-60% support for same-sex marriage in Rhode Island and nearly half of the Rhode Island House has co-sponsored a marriage bill. The only reason that it hasn’t happened is homophobe Governor Don CARCIERI (proof reading would also help!), who promised to veto it. Legislators know they don’t have the votes to override a veto, so you don’t take a vote and force the fence sitters to make a choice when there’s no chance. If you do, they’ll vote against it.

    Electing a Governor who signs a pledge for marriage equality will bring it to Rhode Island. It’s NOTHING like this lame, ignorant post suggests.

  • Same Crap

    More queerty retardation.

  • romeo

    Research is not really Queerty’s mission. Providing flaming forums for reaction, and the consequent exchange of ideas is more the Queerty thing. This joint’s hardly an intellectual hotbed, mind you, but it is one of the most exciting and challenging gay places on the net. That said, Queerty could try harder, or at least stop and read some of their stories before they hit “enter.” Proofreading 101 guys. LOL

  • Carisa Cunningham

    What they have actually said is that they will sign a bill – not simply that they “support marriage equality.”

  • Steven Lubrano

    Lincoln Chafee has come out in support of marriage equality years ago when he was in the senate, the only republican to do so. Chafee is a champion of marriage equality, having been endorsed by the Human Rights Campaign in his 2006 reelection campaign. If anybody is going to bring marriage equality to Rhode Island it will be Lincoln Chafee.

  • Todd Giroux

    RI Governor Candidate , Todd Giroux (I) attended the event and spoke to support marriage equality. Giroux is an openly gay candidate for Governor and called the Moderate party out on an email to him in which The Moderate Party governor candidate wrote of gay rights to take the back seat. The moderate candidate was a no show..

  • Timothy

    Funny thing about Chafee’s lip service… he meant it.

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