I’ll say this for the Bush administration. They can still surprise me. Back in January I posted about how the Bush administration backed an Iranian initiative to block U.N. access to gay human rights groups.
But apparently there’s been an about face, of sorts. As other countries again lined up to deny consultative access to a gay human rights group (this time a German organization), the U.S. parted ways with countries agreed with just months ago, and voted along with France to support U.N. access for a gay organization.
United Nations member states again voted to deny a gay group the ability to officially influence proceedings, but the United States is once again backing the group’s effort to be included, according an international human rights organization.
Mark Bromley, a spokesman for Global Rights, said United Nations members voted May 16 to deny a German gay organization’s bid to obtain consultative status. The status is required for any organization hoping to speak at United Nations meetings, or lobby member nations.
… According to Global Rights, nine nations voted to reject the German group’s application. Opponents included China and Iran.
France and the U.S. were among the seven nations that voted to support the application. Two countries — India and Turkey — abstained.
Bromley said it was significant that U.S. officials voted May 16 to support the German group’s application. In a vote earlier this year, U.S. officials opposed applications by gay-focused groups.
“I think that sort of the big change from our perspective — and the small victory — is that the U.S. government changed its vote,” he said. “That’s a real step forward.”
It is a real step forward, but I can’t help looking a gift-horse in the mouth here and asking just what has changed for the Bush administration since January? Besides poll number, that is. Or maybe that’s it.