falling short

Don’t Be Fooled: Hawaii’s Democratic Gov Candidate Neil Abercrombie Does Not Support Your Right to Marry

Lt. Gov James “Duke” Aiona, the Republican nominee who wants to replace Linda Lingle as governor of Hawaii, says he’ll support a 2012 effort to let voters ban same-sex marriage via constitutional amendment. That would go further than even Lingle, who vetoed the civil unions bill that reached her desk. On the other hand we’ve got Neil Abercrombie, the Democratic nominee, who says he would sign a civil unions bill if it reached his desk. But what’s this about him detesting any effort to have lawmakers legalize same-sex marriage?

When Abercrombie won the Democratic nomination, we looked back on his statement made in July when Lingle vetoed the civil unions bill: “Governor Lingle has made her choice and the Legislature has said it will not go back into a special session for any veto overrides. HB 444 was not a same-sex marriage bill. The State Legislature has already defined marriage as between a man and a woman. Civil unions respect our diversity, protect people’s privacy and reinforce our core values of equality and aloha. Now, it will be up to the next Governor and Legislature to ensure that all people of Hawaii receive equal treatment. Protecting people’s civil rights cannot be compromised. I am committed to that most essential of constitutional imperatives.”

“Equal treatment,” however, does not include the M-word to Abercrombie. Evidently, Abercrombie agrees with Aiona on his stance that marriage is not a civil rights issue, which is why civil unions are just fine for this fella.

Abercrombie only supports same-sex civil unions, but not marriage. At least not the type that would arrive through state lawmakers approving it.

Wasn’t this the same guy who said “religious persuasion” should have no role in the rights of minorities?

Abercrombie had us fooled. The blog Rod 2.0 reported he “supports full marriage equality.” The Human Rights Campaign gives Abercrombie a 100% score — and upon receiving the group’s an endorsement the candidate said “civil rights cannot be compromised.”

What HRC didn’t say, and what we evidently overlooked: Abercrombie believes civil rights cannot be compromised … except maybe a little.