WHAT GA-01 IS SEEING: Buddy Carter “Under Fire” for Voting Against Protecting Marriage Equality

July 22, 2022

After GOP Rep. Buddy Carter joined every Georgia House Republican in voting “no” to protect same-sex and interracial marriage – calling legislation codifying those rights “not good” and the rights themselves “not something we need to be codifying” – voters in Savannah, Brunswick, and across Georgia’s 1st congressional district are hearing about how Carter voted against safeguarding their liberties. In case you missed it:

WJCL in Savannah:

  • “Here’s a look at how our local representatives voted last night…”
  • “Georgia representative Buddy Carter voted against the bill… South Carolina representatives Jim Clyburn and Nancy Mace voted in favor of the bill.”

The Brunswick News: Candidates weigh in on Respect for Marriage Act

  • Georgia’s Republican members of the U.S. House are under fire by state Democrats for voting against the Respect for Marriage Act on Tuesday.
  • All eight Georgia Republicans voted in opposition to the resolution Tuesday, including U.S. Rep. Buddy Carter. Carter represents Glynn County and the other coastal counties in the state.
  • “After a right-wing majority of Supreme Court justices paved the way for a national abortion ban — which GOP leaders admit is on the table if Republicans regain power – one justice indicated same-sex marriage could be targeted next,” said Democratic Party of Georgia spokesperson Ryan Radulovacki.
  • Carter viewed the resolution as redundant.
  • Wade Herring, the Democrat who hopes to unseat Carter in the Nov. 8 general election, considers its passage a positive step in protecting fundamental human rights.
  • “We cannot return to a time when marriages were banned because of race or sex,” said Herring, a Savannah lawyer. “We are a diverse nation with widely differing views and belief systems, but I remain convinced that we can find a way to live together as neighbors in our democracy.”

The Current: Bipartisan vote for same-sex marriage doesn’t include Carter

  • In a rare show of bipartisanship, the U.S. House of Representatives on Tuesday voted 267-157 to write same-sex marriage into federal law, as lawmakers sought to shore up hard-won rights that it fears the right-leaning U.S. Supreme Court could take away.
  • Coastal Georgia’s representative in Congress, Rep. Earl “Buddy” Carter, wasn’t among the 47 Republicans who joined Democrats in approving the Respect for Marriage Act. 
  • In a statement provided by his office on Wednesday explaining his vote, Rep. Carter said the issues raised in the legislation were already “settled law,” adding: “I came to Congress to vote on real issues…”
  • Still, more than political bluster and posturing appear to be behind the fear of the bill’s sponsors and supporters that without federal legislation, previously secured rights on marriage and contraception might be rolled back by the U.S. Supreme Court’s right-wing majority.
  • The constitutional right to abortion was considered “settled law” until the Court last month overturned Roe v. Wade in the case of Dobbs vs. Jackson Women’s Health Organization.
  • In the wake of Tuesday’s vote, Wade Herring, Carter’s Democratic opponent in this fall’s election, called the incumbent “dangerously extreme” and said his rival had “once again demonstrated that he puts politics and division before basic human rights and the people he is supposed to represent.

Savannah Morning News: U.S. House passes same-sex marriage protections bill. Why Rep. Buddy Carter voted ‘no’

  • The Tuesday passage of a U.S. House bill that would codify protections for same sex and interracial marriage was not aided by 1st District Rep. Buddy Carter (R-Pooler).
  • He said Wednesday that the bill was a distraction from more pressing issues, calling same-sex marriage, a right that has been guaranteed since 2015’s Obergefell v Hodges Supreme Court ruling, “settled law,” despite [Supreme Court Justice Clarence] Thomas’ hopes of revisiting the case. 
  • Asked directly if he thought same sex marriage should be legal in the United States, Carter said he deferred to the Supreme Court on the matter.
  • Savannah Pride Center Chairperson Dusty Church said he was unsurprised by Carter’s vote, but said the bill aimed at repealing DOMA was “important.” 
  • “It’s important. And frankly, regardless of Supreme Court, it should have been done a long time ago. It’s absurd that we would even have laws remaining on the books that have not been repealed that would prevent interracial couples or gay couples from marriage,” Church said. 
  • “It’s infuriating, frankly, and terrifying…” Church said. “It’s very, very frustrating and scary.”


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