TV & Radio
Schwarzenegger Mum On Gay Marriage Bill
by 365Gay.com Newscenter Staff
Posted: September 15, 2007 - 4:00 pm ET
(San Francisco, California) Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has yet to publicly say whether he will sign or again veto legislation that would allow same-sex couples to marry in California.
The governor's silence is uncharacteristic. In 2005 he was quick to warn he would veto a similar bill. The measure passed anyway, and Schwarzenegger rejected it.
The current bill passed the Senate a week ago. Schwarzenegger has until October 14th to sign or veto the bill.
So far the only comments on the legislation have come from the governor's spokespeople and only in response to direct questions from the media. Even so the replies have been guarded.
On Friday Schwarzenegger's office told KPIX-television that the governor hasn't taken a position yet on the marriage equality bill.
But the spokesperson noted that, "He has said in the past on this issue he will uphold the will of the people, when they passed Prop. 22."
Proposition 22 was passed by the voters in the year 2000 to stop gay marriage, but the courts have ruled it only applies to marriages performed out of state.
Supporters and foes of gay marriage have mounted massive campaigns to lobby the governor.
Last week conservative groups were in Sacramento pushing the governor to veto the bill.
Next Tuesday supporters of same-sex marriage will hold rallies across the state. One of the largest is expected to be in San Francisco at the Gay Community Center.
In addition Equality California - the statewide LGBT civil rights organization - has begun gathering names for a petition it wants to present to Schwarzenegger. It hopes to have 10,000 names on it.
"A couple thousand signatures aren’t enough. The governor’s office just won’t pay attention. That’s why we need an all-out push," the group said in a statement.
The Religious Freedom and Civil Marriage Protection Act,
would amend the Family Code to define marriage as a civil contract between two persons instead of a civil contract between a man and a woman.
The measure also reaffirms that no religious institution would ever be required to solemnize marriages contrary to its fundamental beliefs.
California law already permits same-sex couples to register with the state as domestic partners, affording them hundreds of state protections.
However, same-sex couples in California and their families still are not eligible for more than a thousand federal protections offered to married couples, including family and medical leave, social security benefits, long-term care insurance and the ability to sponsor a partner for immigration benefits.
Meanwhile, the California Supreme court is expected to hear oral arguments late this year or early in 2008 challenging the state's refusal to recognize same-sex marriage. (story)
Last Updated: Tuesday, 11 September 2007, 10:09 GMT 11:09 UK
Penn to play gay politician Milk
Sean Penn has been lined up to play gay 1970s San Francisco politician Harvey Milk, and Matt Damon his assassin, in a new film from director Gus Van Sant.
Van Sant hopes to begin filming once a distribution deal is finalised.
But the uncertain start date may affect Damon's participation as Milk's killer, Dan White, trade paper Hollywood Reporter said.
Milk, who was assassinated in 1978, was the first openly gay city supervisor of San Francisco.
Van Sant has been lined up to direct a biopic of Milk for over 10 years.
Two years ago Superman Returns director Bryan Singer was attached to a separate Warner Bros project based on the Randy Shilts 1982 biography, The Mayor of Castro Street: The Life and Times of Harvey Milk.
This year the studio's art-house arm, Warner Independent Pictures, brought in Singer's Usual Suspects writer Chris McQuarrie to work on a new draft of the script.
But McQuarrie is currently working on the Tom Cruise drama Valkyrie, making production less likely to happen before Singer starts his Superman sequel, Hollywood Reporter added.
Damon would play White, who shot Milk and mayor George Moscone in 1978.
After serving five years of a seven-year sentence, White committed suicide in 1985.