I am tired of hearing California described as a “bellwether” state, the state that “sets the tone” for the rest of the country and even the world.
That may have been true when it came to Prop 13 or movie trends. But it does NOT apply to Prop 8 - the initiative that has, for the moment, banned gay marriage in California.
Why do I say this? Because, how can California be a trend setter on this issue when more than half the states in the union have already passed laws prohibiting same-sex marriage? How could a "No!" vote on 8 have started a nationwide trend when 26 states already managed to make up their collective mind without sneaking a peak at California’s constitution? They were clearly NOT waiting to see whether the Golden State passed or rejected Prop 8.
This bogus “bellwether” argument was used by out-of-state donors to justify the fat checks they wrote leading into last week. They rationalized trespassing into California politics by saying that what we did here could move like rising sea levels across the country.
I’m sorry, but whether or not California’s constitution allows same-sex marriage is not going to convince folks from Alabama, Montana, Texas, Utah or any of the other 22 states to follow suit. But the issue did, unfortunately, draw more than $20 million in out-of-state dollars that skewed the result of an important question. And we Californians will be the one who will live with the result long after these interlopers have closed their checkbooks.