Oetken is a qualified nominee who earned his place on the bench, but he’s also the first openly-gay man ever to serve as a federal judge.
That this breakthrough occurred with very little notice is itself an encouraging sign. Conservatives didn’t flip out; the religious right didn’t organize rallies to derail the nomination; Republican senators didn’t raise a fuss; gay-rights groups didn’t feel the need to laud President Obama and Senate Democrats for the breakthrough; and the media largely overlooked the development. This was considered fairly routine, which is as it should be in a healthy, mature society.
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