After learning that San Jose attorney Steven Pogue contributed $500 to the 2008 Proposition 8 campaign to ban gay marriage, the Voice has rescinded its endorsement of his election to the Santa Clara County Superior Court.
The paper recommends Pogue's opponent, Cynthia Sevely, a deputy district attorney, in the June 5 election.
The Voice learned of Pogue's active support of Prop. 8 from several readers, and Pogue has confirmed he was a donor to the campaign.
"The Voice is a strong supporter of gay rights and of gay marriage, and we cannot lend our endorsement to a candidate for judge who has actively attempted to deny this right," Voice publisher Tom Gibboney said.
None of the judicial candidates, including Pogue, was asked to state a position on Prop. 8 during endorsement interviews with the Voice.
Pogue said in a statement released Friday that he believes the state should simply register domestic partners and leave marriage up to an individual's "...religion, philosophy or vows on a starry night."
Doing so would force the federal government to recognize civil unions, he said, and it would ease feelings among gay people that they were being denied something and those who believe only in marriage between a man and a woman would not feel they were being forced by the state to accept the state's definition.
Gibboney said candidates' views on gay marriage may or may not be important to individual voters, but by providing active financial and public support of a highly divisive and emotional ballot measure, Pogue showed a passion on the issue that is inconsistent with the qualities the Voice is looking for in a judge.
In the race for second judgeship, the Voice continues to support Paul Colin, a deputy District Attorney.