If Arnold Schwarzenegger could travel back in time, as he did in the Terminator movies, and stop himself from vetoing gay marriage in 2005 and 2007, then perhaps he could have been a gay rights hero instead of a political non-entity. However, the Silicon Valley techies haven’t yet invented a time machine. So Schwarzenegger must content himself with an op-ed in the pages of the Washington Post, lecturing fellow Republicans about the evils of Indiana’s religious freedom law.
His message, he says, is “for Republicans who are fighting for laws that fly in the face of equality and freedom.” Religious freedom doesn’t figure, somehow, in that equation. Schwarzenegger says that Republicans should stop worrying about that and focus instead on “on real solutions to problems Americans are facing.”
Problems like the staggering public debt he left behind? Problems like cap-and-trade regulations that are driving businesses and homeowners to other states? Not those.
Infrastructure, he says. Education. Air quality.
Not “distracting, divisive laws like the one Indiana initially passed.”
Such laws, he says, are responsible for the collapse of Republican voter identification in California. He cites Proposition 8, the traditional marriage referendum, which passed in 2008.
But there is another reason for the drop-off: Schwarzenegger’s own shocking performance as governor. He came in as a reformer and he left as just another failed, corrupted politician.
That was more damaging to the GOP than support for traditional marriage–a stance that, at the time, had the backing of a majority of voters.
It’s not clear Schwarzenegger understands Indiana’s law, which is similar to laws across the country. It is clear, however, that he has no sympathy for the likes of the Little Sisters of the Poor, holding out for their religious freedom against Obamacare, citing a law similar to Indiana’s.
They don’t figure in the Terminator’s futuristic vision for the party.