The Corner

Krauthammer’s Take

From Thursday night’s Fox News All-Stars.

On the striking down of Proposition 8:

It’s obviously a very sweeping ruling, and it was a great day for gay marriage advocates. It was a victory, but I think it’s a Pyrrhic victory. It’s going to end up in the Supreme Court. It’s quite likely that the Supreme Court will reverse this.

What I think we’re doing here is recapitulating the history of abortion, when in the early 70s the judges decided to wipe out all the laws of the land on abortion, and say that abortion is legal. Now I’ll read you what Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Supreme Court justice, a liberal who supports legalized abortion, said before she ended up on the Court: “Roe v. Wade … halted a political process that was moving in a reform direction and thereby … prolonged divisiveness and deferred stable settlement of the issue.”

This is exactly what’s happening here with gay marriage. At the time, abortion was being legalized in New York and elsewhere, and we ended up with a large number of Americans who felt left out with no democratic means of changing the ruling. That’s happening on gay marriage.

Look, Prop. 8 passed by 52 percent of the vote. The same referendum eight years earlier, in the same state, passed with 62 percent. It’s obvious where the trend is headed, and over time states are legalizing gay marriage as happened the right way — by legislative action — in D.C., in Vermont, and in New Hampshire.

And that’s how it ought to be done. Otherwise we’re going to have an embittered country, which is going to [have] no recourse [by] the vote, in the legislative assemblies, because of a ruling by fiat of judges. And that will be divisive, and it will postpone a stable settlement of the issue. …

What’s so ironic about all our discussion about where Obama stands [on gay marriage] is that he’s now irrelevant. It’s now in the hands of the courts. It doesn’t matter what the president thinks, what the Congress thinks, what the people think. It’s going to be decided by a bunch of judges on the Ninth Circuit, and ultimately by the nine on the Supreme Court. That’s what’s wrong with doing it this way.

On Hamid Karzai meeting in Tehran with Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on the day the State Department declared Iran the foremost state sponsor of terrorism:

Look, Karzai is a cunning, unreliable ingrate. Let’s start with that. …

However, you have to think in his terms. When the Soviets left, the leader of Afghanistan [Najibullah] was left behind. He took refuge in the U.N. compound, was ripped out by the mujahideen, tortured, lynched, and left in a horrible position indescribable on television. The Afghans will remember that.

And when they hear (a) that President Obama yesterday is talking about negotiations with Iran over Afghanistan, cutting a deal, and (b) hearing in the speech that the president gave in December that he is going to do a surge but we will begin leaving in July of 2011 — when they hear all of that, they remember what happened.

And that is why, he [Karzai] is looking to cut his deals before the Americans leave. That is why it’s all understandable. I think the original sin was announcing a transition/withdrawal date — and also, these negotiations with Iran.

How can the president of Afghanistan, who lives in the region — Iran is not going away — be more anti-Iranian than the Americans who want to open negotiations? So even though personally he is not a sweet guy, you have to understand his motives.

NRO Staff — Members of the National Review Online editorial and operational teams are included under the umbrella “NR Staff.”


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