Weekend Leftover Tabs

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Steven L. Taylor
About Steven L. Taylor
Steven L. Taylor is a Professor of Political Science and a College of Arts and Sciences Dean. His main areas of expertise include parties, elections, and the institutional design of democracies. His most recent book is the co-authored A Different Democracy: American Government in a 31-Country Perspective. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Texas and his BA from the University of California, Irvine. He has been blogging since 2003 (originally at the now defunct Poliblog). Follow Steven on Twitter


  1. Kylopod says:

    Most unintentionally ironic headline of the day:

    “House Freedom Caucus Urges GOP Senators to Oppose Same-Sex Marriage Bill”

  2. Scott says:


    Here’s my Letter to the Editor that was published yesterday in the San Antonio Express-News.

    Re: Dems Seek to Protect Same-Sex Marriage (20 July 2022)

    The House passed the Respect for Marriage Act codifying the right to marriage for all including same-sex and interracial unions. My Congressman, Rep Chip Roy (R-21) voted against this bill and once again against freedom and privacy for Texans. As a member of the falsely named House Freedom Caucus, he aligns himself with hard right fellow travelers who are against our freedom to plan our families, our freedom to marry who we choose, and our freedom to privacy in our own homes. Instead of encouraging freedom, he supports efforts by the state of Texas to intrude into our homes and bedrooms. No, Chip Roy is the opposite of a freedom fighter.

  3. Matt Bernius says:

    Apparently, the editors of the The National Review are more than willing to re-litigate same-sex marriage: Republicans Should Reject the Gay-Marriage Bill.

    It’s not as if the same editors wrote an article in 2018 (https://www.nationalreview.com/2018/07/supreme-court-unlikely-to-overturn-roe-v-wade/) that (a) predicted that Roe wouldn’t get overturned, and (b) even if it did get overturned “no woman who could obtain an abortion today would be unable to get one post-Roe.”

    These are the same people telling you that there’s no need to protect gay marriage.

  4. Kathy says:

    Via WaPo: Texan politicians won’t say this, but solar is saving their tushies right now

    “Not. Worth. Saving.” Ned Flanders.

  5. Kylopod says:

    Look, we all now the “Freedom Caucus” moniker was always a sham, right? But in the past they were at least able to pretend to care only about fiscal issues. Of course, part of that had to do with the fact that they didn’t need to deal with social issues as much, since that was mostly happening at the judicial level. The Dobbs decision–and particularly Clarence Thomas’s ominous statement on revisiting earlier decisions on gay rights and contraception–has blown that strategy out of the water.

    The American right, in falsely branding itself a “pro-freedom” ideology, has long tried to hide its reactionary agenda behind process arguments–principally “states’ rights” and “judicial restraint.” Never mind that their commitment to these principles was always a laughable farce. The trick is to support separation-of-powers arguments as long as it leads to outcomes they desire.

    Thomas himself exemplifies this gambit. In his dissent to Lawrence v. Texas, he described the anti-sodomy law under review as “uncommonly silly.” (I find that very phrasing despicable; the law wasn’t silly, it was abhorrent.) Thomas was trying to have his cake and eat it too, denying any sympathy for draconian policies while using all his power to protect those policies. That’s what conservatives do, and it’s entirely by design.

    With these policies shifting from the judicial to the legislative arena, conservatives don’t have anywhere left to hide.

  6. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Kylopod: They are staunch defenders of “the freedom to put lesser people in their rightful place.”

  7. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Matt Bernius: Of course there’s no need to protect gay marriages. They’re not in gay marriages. Not a single one of ’em. It’s somewhere in the Constitution, I’m sure of it: “Thou shalt not be required to protect rights of others.” [Especially not that kind of “others.”]

  8. Scott F. says:

    @Matt Bernius:
    The National Review doesn’t sweat hypocrisy and hasn’t for a long time. Their goalposts are designed to be easily moved to benefit the home team.

    The arguments are so weak in the re-litigation of same-sex marriage column it gives away the game. Even the NR commentariat is having none of it.

  9. Jay L Gischer says:

    Just a note about SSM. Before we get to that, I will report my amusement at the comments on this article. Here is an issue that wedges the right, not the left. It warms my heart a bit.

    So, on to my reaction. I was adopted and raised by a hetero couple that couldn’t have children. They did well by me, and I remember them fondly. I utterly reject the notion, which I saw in many places in those comments, that marriage is predicated on the ability to produce children.

    And while we’re at it, let’s mention that one reason my parents chose to adopt was that my mother had an ectopic pregnancy that left her unable to bear children. And thus I’m very cold to the idea that a woman is defined as “someone who can have children”, and held that view long before I ever knew any trans people.

    Families are made by choices, whether or not gametes are involved. I know of a couple of families where one or the other (and yes I know both types) of the partners involved in producing the child biologically walked away and someone else stepped in and helped form and preserve the family.