MNGOP Sen. Osmek misrepresents marriage equality bill while speaking to students
When you don't have a good argument, you can always try making things up.
Sen. David Osmek
The presses have been alerted -- a politician has spoken untruthfully.
This time, the culprit is first-term Sen. David Osmek, R-Mound, who either hasn't read the not-especially-long text of the marriage equality bill being considered by the legislature this session or isn't concerned to describe it accurately.
Here's what Osmek had to say about the bill during a talk he recently gave to a classroom of Glencoe-Silver Lake High School students (via the McLeod County Chronicle):
Osmek took office in January, so he hasn't had a lot of experience at the state level as yet, he told the students. But Osmek was still more than willing to field their questions about a variety of political issues, starting with gay marriage.
"To me, it's a First Amendment issue," said Osmek, referring to the separation of church and state.
If the state endorses gay marriage, Osmek fears, it may lead down a "slippery slope" to the state forcing churches to perform and recognize gay marriage, whether gay marriage is part of a church's theology or not.
"I'm afraid it will eventually inflict on religious institutions," said Osmek. "The pilgrims came here for religious freedom, and we need to respect that."
Osmek said that domestic partners are already given benefits by many businesses and corporations, and feels it best left to the private sector to create its own definition of domestic partnerships.
But as pointed out by Bluestem Prairie's Sally Jo Sorensen, the actual text of SF925 couldn't be clearer about giving religious organizations the freedom to determine who they marry. From the bill:
EXEMPTION BASED ON RELIGIOUS ASSOCIATION.
Nothing in this chapter prohibits any religious association, religious corporation, or religious society that is not organized for private profit, or any institution organized for educational purposes that is operated, supervised, or controlled by a religious association, religious corporation, or religious society that is not organized for private profit, from:
(1) limiting admission to or giving preference to persons of the same religion or denomination...
Refusal to solemnize; protection of religious doctrine.
Each religious organization, association, or society has exclusive control over its own theological doctrine, policy, teachings, and beliefs regarding who may marry within that faith. A licensed or ordained member of the clergy or other person authorized by section to solemnize a marriage is not subject to any fine, penalty, or civil liability for failing or8refusing to solemnize a marriage for any reason.
Consider it another example of the highly dubious logic often employed by gay marriage opponents.
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you’ll never miss City Pages' biggest stories.
- Richfield cop shoves, hits Somali teen [video]
- Buy your family season tickets at the new Vikings Stadium for a mere $17,000
- Landon Steele's anti-hipster, anti-Black Lives Matter rant goes viral