Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Fred Karger to testify on gay marriage repeal

Tomorrow morning, Republican presidential hopeful Fred Karger will be at the State House in Concord to testify on HB 437 and HB 443, two bills aimed at banning gay marriage in New Hampshire. Karger, who hopes to become the first openly gay candidate to run for President of the United States, launched a presidential exploratory committee back in April of 2010. Since then, he's probably spent more time in New Hampshire than any other contender for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination. This will be his 12th visit to the Granite State.

Gay marriage became legal in New Hampshire just last year and tomorrow's hearings will mark the start of a long journey that could end in repeal. NH House Majority Leader D. J. Bettencourt (R-Salem) has indicated that he'd prefer to wait till next year to take up the issue, but opponents of gay marriage are eager to start the process. 

As the early stages of 2012 election get under way here in New Hampshire, an interesting debate about gay rights is playing out within the Republican Party. Just last week, the Log Cabin Republicans issued a statement condemning Tim Pawlenty's call to restore Don't Ask Don't Tell. It's too early to tell what kind of role these gay rights activists will play within GOP as 2012 approaches, but if Fred Karger gets his way they certainly won't be silent. 

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