I’m blogging lite, as you know, but must while in the U.S. of A. mention the decision of the California Supreme Court, which has ruled that gay people have a constitutional right to marry their same-sex partners, just as opposite-sex couples do.

The responses of the candidates for the White House are interesting: I have sympathy for McCain’s view that this should be a matter for political decision, not for judges; but also for the view of Obama and Clinton, that civil unions equivalent to marriage would be a good way forward, as the UK and many other European countries have already found. The difference between them is subtle, but clear – while McCain would simply leave this to the States (a much more liberal position than many Republicans would take, many of them wanting a constitutional amendment to prohibit gay marriage), his Democratic opponents would encourage civil unions. The question for social liberal is, how hard would they encourage them?