While serving as governor of Utah, I pushed for civil unions and expanded reciprocal benefits for gay citizens. I did so not because of political pressure—indeed, at the time 70 percent of Utahns were opposed—but because as governor my role was to work for everybody, even those who didn’t have access to a powerful lobby. Civil unions, I believed, were a practical step that would bring all citizens more fully into the fabric of a state they already were—and always had been—a part of. That was four years ago. Today we have an opportunity to do more: conservatives should start to lead again and push their states to join the nine others that allow all their citizens to marry. I’ve been married for 29 years. My marriage has been the greatest joy of my life. There is nothing conservative about denying other Americans the ability to forge that same relationship with the person they love.For the first time in a long time, I didn't want to write about what Republicans were getting wrong because for once, they were getting it right. As long as you're demonizing people socially and culturally by telling them you're better than them based on your religious beliefs, they're not going to listen to your other ideas - even if those ideas are stellar. You could have the solution to balance the budget - but if you denigrate the people you need to support your plan, you'll just be another failed politician with another failed plan. That's why Jon Huntsman felt like a breath of fresh air - especially in light of the post-November Republican freak out.
In a contentious Meet the Press interview on Sunday (the same interview that pitted him against Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick), Jindal came out against marriage equality stating that it wasn't a requirement for Republicans to continue winning elections. According to Jindal, "Look, I believe in the traditional definition of marriage." He went on to say, "We lost [the 2012 election] because we didn’t present a vision showing how we believe the entire economy can grow, how people can join the middle class. We’re in aspirational party and we need policies that are consistent with that aspirational private sector growth."
Jindal is one of the most probable contenders for the GOP ticket in 2016. Unless he wises up on his cultural issues bias, we all may be seeing yet another sweeping Democratic victory. But the issue is larger than base politics and winner-versus-loser elections; it's about fundamental differences in ideology and the need for the Republican party to evolve on social issues. A party cannot survive on economic ideology alone - and with the Tea Party's infusion of fringe social issues dominance in the past few years, the Republican party's foreseeable future looks dim.
In case you missed it on Sunday, here's the video of Jindal's continued cultural incompetence: