1. A majority of either chamber can pass resolutions deploring violence and hate rhetoric against gays (and marriage supporters).
2. Either chamber can hold hearings on signature fraud, keeping the spotlight on this seamy aspect of the anti-marriage campaign.
3. A majority of the joint session can refer the amendment to a study commission, to be recalled only if demands for a full debate are met, and at a time of the majority’s choosing–if at all.
4. As part of the above, the majority can determine when the amendment will be put before the voters: 2008 if voted on in time for the 2008 ballot, 2010 if after that.
5. A majority of the joint session could approve its own proposal to amend the constitution to outlaw discriminatory amendments.
6. In fact, this majority could cause such an amendment to be on the ballot in 2010 and, by delaying the anti-marriage amendment until then, cause both proposals to be before the voters at the same time. The majority could word the ban on discriminatory amendments to apply to the anti-marriage amendment if both passed.
7. A majority of the legislature could amend the general laws to recognize marriage for all, putting an end once and for all to the “activist judges” meme.
8. In fact, the majority could rewrite marriage laws so as to make marriage rights for everyone unseverable–so that the effect of the anti-marriage amendment would be to completely invalidate the law that defines marriage itself. A vote for the anti-marriage amendment would then be a vote to outlaw marriage for everybody.
The above are examples, not prescriptions, and some may be impractical or unwise. None are strategies in themselves. But can we get our heads around the fact that (1) the majority is on our side and has considerable power, and (2) this gives us an important strategic advantage over our opponents?
If so, I’m sure the progressive community can creatively think up some better examples and ideas of how to go forward.