woodsmen saidNYT: There is a reason most Republican politicians have not tailored their positions on major issues toward younger voters: Doing so would risk angering the party’s base, which is predominantly old, white and culturally conservative.
Enter the Supreme Court.
With the legality of same-sex marriage being argued on Tuesday, the court could allow Republicans to abandon an unpopular position without abandoning their principles or risking a primary challenge. History would effectively be bailing out the Republican.
It might, if Republicans now drop the issue. But I wonder if they will?
Many of them have publicly said they will press for a US Constitutional Amendment to outlaw same-sex marriage, which would trump the Supreme Court. The Court can only rule on what the Constitution says, and if it's amended to say same-sex marriage is prohibited, then that ends the debate.
And some States are saying they will ignore the Supreme Court, if it rules in favor of gay marriage. This has precedence. Southern States ignored the Court in the 1950s when it ruled that "separate but equal" school discrimination was unconstitutional.
President Eisenhower had to federalize the National Guard to enforce it, and it still wasn't happening everywhere. It took the passage of Congressional legislation in the 1960s to finally end it. (Though Republicans are currently doing an end-run with "charter schools") I remember as late as 1970, when attending the Kentucky Derby, seeing water fountains and restrooms marked "White" and "Colored".
The Supreme Court decision is not a given, as everyone is assuming. And even if they approve same-sex marriage, it may be with many caveats. Plus acceptance by the States may not happen overnight. I see years of struggle still ahead. And if a Constitutional Amendment is passed, which a favorable Court decision may prompt, well, then we're dead in the water.