Political Radar

`To the T'

November 1st, 2013

State House lawmakers reconvened a public hearing this morning on a gay marriage bill and vowed to hear from the 5,181 people who had signed up to testify by midnight.

Rep. Karl Rhoads, the chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, said people who are not present today when their names are called will have to wait until the end to testify but that he would allow them to speak.

Rhoads made the announcements after complaints from House lawmakers who oppose the bill that the committee was skipping over people who were not in the state Capitol auditorium when the hearing reconvened at 8:30 a.m.

"I'd like to finish the hearing this century," Rhoads told colleagues.

Rhoads and Rep. Sylvia Luke, the chairwoman of the House Finance Committee, had announced shortly after midnight -- after 14 hours of testimony -- that the meeting would recess until 8:30 a.m. after initially indicating their preference to continue with testimony.

During a brief recess this morning, when tensions in the audience were high, Rep. Marcus Oshiro stood at the back of the auditorium and told people that they had a First Amendment right to speak and petition their government.

Oshiro complained that no public notice was given that the hearing would reconvene, so as many as 3,000 people might not know they were supposed to return to the state Capitol in the morning.

"This is not right as far as the public hearing process," Oshiro shouted, "that's what I'm voicing."

Oshiro told the audience that House rules have the effect of law. "Whether you are for or against this measure, you need to know the rules that you have!" Oshiro said.

Oshiro later told reporters that House leaders should follow both the spirit and the letter of the public notice requirement.

"Either in the court of law, or in the court of public opinion, there's that taint," he said. "And that's what we're trying to avoid because if you really want to do justice to this issue and this measure, then you need to afford all due process, procedural requirements to the `T.'

House Majority Leader Scott Saiki said the hearing on Thursday was properly noticed and that the announcement to recess until the morning was not in violation of any procedure.

House lawmakers who oppose the bill -- and some  of those who say they are undecided, like Oshiro -- have deliberately sought to slow the process down.

Late Thursday, a few House lawmakers and other opponents of the bill appealed to people to come to the Capitol before midnight so they could sign up to testify and extend the hearing longer.

A few hundred people arrived at the Capitol in the hours before midnight to sign up.

11 Responses to “`To the T'”

  1. sad:

    It's sad that Marcus Oshiro has come down to this level when as Chair of the Finance Committee he was king of backroom deals and one of the main proponents of the characteristic lack of transparency during the Say speakership. It also seems cynical since Oshiro was also leader of the group of Democrats in the House most willing to gut major aspects of the Sunshine Law that apply transparency requirements to the holding of meetings of all other state and county boards and commissions. I'm not sure if its desperation about this issue specifically or just sour grapes, but Oshiro seems to be in shame free fall. No grace or dignity like the old-timers when they lost their leadership roles.

  2. Mr. T:

    The acceptance of homosexuality is not new. The Greeks practiced it.


    If we look through history, the "belief in God" was the "social experiment" that worked and won, not the acceptance of homosexuality. That is why our nation's founding fathers put God in the Constitution. By passing SB1, we are not taking society forward one step but backward several steps. If we pass SB1, where do we stop? Next comes polygamy, incest, marriage of man and beast?

    With that said. We also value individual freedom. As one lady who gave testimony yesterday said: can't we come up with laws that would give gay couples their rights and yet not infringe on rights of others? Do not change the definition of marriage. It works.

  3. Especially Incognito:

    Since sodomy was legalized between two consenting adults,
    that was the end of it. For some that is the beginning.

    I am assuming the lists of names are closed as this "special" hearing
    will end up in a marathon but there is no finish line.

    Being "special" is not equality.
    "better, greater, or otherwise different from what is usual".
    "a thing, such as an event, product, or broadcast, that is designed or organized for a particular occasion or purpose."

  4. Nala007:

    What is quite transparent is Marcus' childish behavior that is motivated by his bitterness that he fell out of power. His behavior is so dishonorable and unbecoming. I never took an opinion about the House Leadership Reorganization as I considered that an internal matter. Now, after witness the conduct of not only Marcus Oshiro, but also Jo Jordan, all I can say is Long Live Speaker Joe.

  5. Auto de Fe:

    The Greeks never had gay marriage. They married women for babies and did boys for pleasure. Gay marriage has no historical antecedent anywhere on Earth prior to 1993. Its purpose is to undermine the nuclear family as the foundation of civilization. Rather than 'liberating' gays, it imposes an imitation heterosexual lifestyle on homosexuality in order to achieve this end.

  6. Especially Incognito:

    Greece is the word. So "carefree" in act. Those
    who "did boys" called those "boys" concubines
    and they were straight men who did so act.

    NSA is for such tranparency. Wikileak exposes
    one's transparency. Contrary?

  7. Especially Incognito:

    "The acceptance of homosexuality is not new. The Greeks practiced it."
    "practiced" but not contraried, Marry.

  8. Sayer:

    I think the main thing is if people want to have a certain type of relationship and it's not hurting anyone else and it's consenting adults, then let them.

  9. Kolea:

    Sayer, you are being too reasonable! And very wrong. If we hear the Word of God in our ear, we have not just a right, but a responsibility to try to dictate how they live their rights.

    We have the right, and the responsibility, to disregard Jesus's imperative that we love our neighbor as ourselves, but to go past him to cherrypick select quotes from Leviticus which support our prejudices and fears. Just as our forebears found quotes to justify slavery, segregation, the oppression of women and the slaughter of the original inhabitants of North America (and any other lands our "leaders" coveted).

    Why do you have so little faith? Or, to put it another way, why do you put so much faith in reasonableness and fairness rather than in Wayne Cordeiro's vision of a vengeful, punitive, bigoted God?

  10. Especially Incognito:

    The Buddhistic approach.

  11. Especially Incognito:

    It is already obvious that some will bully.
    Thinking they are right. Right into a circle.
    Wrong turn if they go left. So keep going in
    a circle. Yet you won't meet the other end.

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