Is this a flip-flop? Mayor Giuliani once accepted civil unions as good while resisting calling them marriage. Now he's opposing one version of a civil union law because it makes civil unions indistinguishable from marriage and because it recognizes civil unions from other states.
Whatever this is, it doesn't seem to be a flip-flop, because at most it's a change in position once in one direction and not a moving back and forth according to the audience or according to changes in his mood. But I'm not entirely sure his two positions are inconsistent. He seems to think it's too far to make civil unions absolutely equivalent to marriage, but maybe he thought civil unions in previous cases didn't go that far. (He may have been wrong about that factual matter and now realizes he was wrong. Alternatively, maybe this new law he's complaining about is different. I have no idea, but either seems possible to me.)
And if he did change his mind, it might be wrong if he changed from the right position to the wrong position, but our political dialogue seems to have stooped to a new low with this election by insisting that any change of mind ever is automatically immoral. Calling it a flip-flop not only doesn't recognize that a change of mind isn't the same thing as a flip-flop. It treats all changes of mind as bad, when changes of mind in the right direction are generally good and ought to be supported.
I'm not sure why he thinks it's wrong for a state with civil unions to recognize civil unions in other states, though. Isn't that strange?
Update: The Influence Peddler and DaveG at race 4 2008 agree with me that this isn't necessarily a change in view (never mind a flip-flop). I don't agree with DaveG's attempt to make sense of the other state issue, however. Maybe the Influence Peddler is right that he thinks it encourages other states' allowance of gay marriage, but I don't see how merely recognizing gay marriages from other states as if they were civil unions in NH counts as endorsing gay marriages in other states, since it doesn't at all recognize them as marriages. What it does is demote them to civil unions. So I'm left wondering what his problem with that aspect of it really is. Perhaps he does think it will promote gay marriages, but I'm not sure on what grounds. But there's no way it counts as endorsing gay marriage in other states.