There is a widespread - and totally false - idea (see below), particularly in Europe, that one of the main reasons why George Bush won the 2004 presidential election was because of "value voters" whose main issue was opposition to gay marriage. TigerHawk (via Instapundit) has a discussion about the recent uproar caused by the announcement of Mary Cheney's pregnancy. He approvingly quotes Kathryn Jean Lopez from The Corner, who says:
Unless Mary Cheney asks to be part of a political debate about this, there is no need to have a public discussion about her life. The New York Times raises the question of how/who, etc. That just seems outrageous to me. She is not the vice president. She is not the president. That's just uncalled for from anyone in the media/commentariat. I could be wrong but the media/commentators seem to be making it — Mary Cheney's pregnancy — a political issue, not the Cheneys.And then he goes on to demolish the Times' unsurprisingly dishonest "reporting:"
Then the Times says this:Do read the whole thing.In 2004, Ms. Cheney worked on the Bush-Cheney re-election campaign, which won in part because of the so-called values voters who were drawn to the polls by ballot measures seeking to ban same-sex marriage.Er, no. A very academic no (that is otherwise quite interesting on the impact of same-sex marriage initiatives). Sadly, no. No. A big old Pew Research no. All of these studies and many more can be found by Googling the words *Bush election 2004 gay marriage ballot*. It is hard to find stories with any actual data that make the opposite argument. The New York Times is not only dead wrong in its allegation, it is so wrong about a widely-studied and publicized "urban legend" that we are forced to choose between two explanations: (i) the reporter (Jim Rutenberg) just didn't do the most basic reporting, and his editor didn't ask him the most obvious questions, or (ii) the Times (either the reporter or the editor) deliberately inserted the legend about same-sex marriage initiatives to fabricate evidence in favor of one of the left's favorite arguments, that "so-called" values voters are easily duped.