When it comes to granting legal rights to same-sex couples, many of the Catholic right will kick and scream, oppose without thinking, and demand excommunication and (at the very least), denial of communion for those not with them. In that light, what is going on in Washington state right now is interesting. As noted by Rocco Palmo, Joseph Tyson, Auxiliary Bishop of Seattle, testified at state legislative hearing concerning the expansion of domestic partnership rights and benefits. Tyson sought to broaden the provisions, to encompass not only same-sex couples but any registered "domestic partnership" (that could include, for example, an elderly parent).
This pragmatic solution as the one adopted a decade ago in San Francisco by then-Archbishop William Levada, averting a showdown with the City, and a possible loss of funding for the local Catholic Charities. Levada's solution was that domestic partnership benefits would be paid to "any legally domiciled member" of a household.
Of course, Levada was denounced on the right as a sell-out. But one person paid attention, and and promoted Levada to his old job (Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith) when this person was elected pope. And, interestingly, one of Pope Benedict's first appointments in the United States was (you guessed it), Joseph Tyson of Seattle. Yet again, will some on the Catholic right claim to know the mind of Benedict more than Benedict himself?