First, it was a matter of tradition. Then, a moral issue. Now, after courts across the country have thrown out multiple arguments in favor of banning same-sex marriage, the Beshear Administration is on the vanguard of a new logic: dollars and cents.
In a brief filed this week in federal court, Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear says same-sex marriage would hurt the economy by not producing children—and supporters of same-sex marriage say their opponents are running out of ideas.
In the brief, Beshear argues that because same-sex couples can’t biologically procreate—even though they can, say, adopt publicly-subsidized foster children—they are harming the commonwealth’s long-term economic viability.
The brief is included below.
“It’s almost hard to come up with a response it’s so ludicrous,” says Laura Landenwich, an attorney for the same-sex couples.
“It’s laughable. I mean, I would really like to know how many children were born, how many opposite-sex couples decided to procreate because same-sex couples were precluded from participating in the state’s institution of marriage.”
Martin Cothran is a senior policy analyst for the conservative Family Foundation of Kentucky, which opposes sex-same marriage. Cothran said the economic argument made by Beshear is the end result of liberal judicial activism.
“It’s sort of rigged in that sense,” he says. “You can’t use tradition, you can’t use morality, you can’t use all these things now according to judicial doctrines as a basis for, as a rational basis for a law.”
Landenwich says the plaintiffs will respond to Beshear’s filing some time next month.
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