As Governor of Massachusetts, Mitt Romney directed his legal staff to investigate the circumstances surrounding the birth of each and every child born to same-sex parents, before allowing the state to approve issuing them a birth certificate for their newborn children.
“To comply with the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court ruling that legalized gay marriage in 2003, the state Registry of Vital Records and Statistics said it needed to revise its birth certificate forms for babies born to same-sex couples,” the Boston Globe reported yesterday, calling it a ‘”minor adjustment.”
The box for “father” would be relabeled “father or second parent,’’ reflecting the new law.
But to then-Governor Mitt Romney, who opposed child-rearing by gay couples, the proposal symbolized unacceptable changes in traditional family structures.
He rejected the Registry of Vital Records plan and insisted that his top legal staff individually review the circumstances of every birth to same-sex parents. Only after winning approval from Romney’s lawyers could hospital officials and town clerks across the state be permitted to cross out by hand the word “father’’ on individual birth certificates, and then write in “second parent,’’ in ink.
An excellent example of Republican small government at its finest.
The Globe adds that Romney’s deputy general counsel of the Department of Public Health warned Romney that children issued hand-altered birth certificates couldould “encounter [difficulties] later in life . . . as they try to register for school, or apply for a passport or a driver’s license, or enlist in the military, or register to vote.”
“In one instance, in which a couple asked that the handwritten alteration for the second parent say “wife” instead of second parent, the request was denied,” the Globe reports, having obtained state records earlier this month. “In another, Leske refused to allow a birth certificate to be issued listing a same-sex couple as the parents because they were not married.”
The Globe investigation notes “Romney’s public statements left no doubt that he was opposed to marriage and parenting by same-sex couples.”
“The children of America have the right to have a father and a mother,’’ Romney said in his prepared remarks. “What should be the ideal for raising a child? Not a village, not ‘parent A’ and ‘parent B,’ but a mother and a father.’’
Romney also warned about the societal impact of gay parents raising children. “Scientific studies of children raised by same-sex couples are almost nonexistent,’’ he said. “It may affect the development of children and thereby future society as a whole.’’
Romney expressed similar beliefs during a speech in 2005 to socially conservative voters in South Carolina, as he was beginning to be viewed as a serious candidate for president.
“Some gays are actually having children born to them,’’ he declared. “It’s not right on paper. It’s not right in fact. Every child has a right to a mother and father.’’
“I was a severely conservative Republican governor,” Romney told the audience at CPAC, the Conservative Political Action Conference, earlier this year.
Image: John F. Kennedy’s Massachusetts birth certificate, via Wikipedia
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