Wasting little time, Democrats in Congress are already proposing legislation to replace the words “husband” and “wife” in the federal code with gender-neutral language reflective of the Supreme Court’s June 26 pronouncement that married couples in the United States need no longer consist of a male and a female.
On July 8, Representative Lois Capps (D-Calif.) introduced the Amend the Code for Marriage Equality Act, which she said in a press release “would strike the use of gendered terms such as ‘husband’ and ‘wife’ from the federal code and replace them with more gender-neutral terms, such as ‘spouse’ or ‘married couple.’”
“The Amend the Code for Marriage Equality Act recognizes that the words in our laws have meaning and can continue to reflect prejudice and discrimination even when rendered null by our highest courts,” Capps said.
In other words, the U.S. Code’s use of “husband” and “wife” — until recently, uncontroversial terms for the parties to the millennia-old practice of matrimony — is now evidence of bigotry that must be expunged.
“Our values as a country are reflected in our laws,” Capps continued. “I authored this bill because it is imperative that our federal code reflect the equality of all marriages.”
That is, unnatural “marriages” blessed by five robed eminences are equivalent to traditional marriages, and thus the law must be changed to treat them the same. This means, of course, that same-sex spouses could be entitled to the same benefits under the law as opposite-sex spouses, such as Social Security survivors’ benefits, which would force taxpayers to bless, so to speak, same-sex marriage whether they agree with it or not. On the other hand, it could also subject same-sex spouses to the less marriage-friendly portions of federal law, such as the income-tax code’s penalty for spouses filing jointly.
The tax code, as it happens, is the subject of Senate Democrats’ pro-same-sex marriage legislation. Introduced July 9 by Senator Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and cosponsored by the entire Senate Democratic Caucus including presidential candidate Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), the Equal Dignity for Married Taxpayers Act “sets new precedent by removing gender-specific references to marriage, enshrining dignity and recognition for LGBTQ Americans in the tax code,” according to a Wyden press release.
“It’s about time that we update our tax law to reflect the institution of legal marriage,” said Wyden. “All married Americans deserve the same respect and dignity in the eyes of the law.”
Likewise, Senator Cory Booker (D-N.J.), in his own statement, said, “For too long, same-sex couples have been treated as second class citizens, and the onus falls on all of us to right this wrong. If the highest court in the land can stand by the constitutionality of all legal marriages, then we must fight to ensure our tax code justly affords all married people the same privileges.”
Despite these seemingly broadminded remarks, the Senate bill actually stops far short of full “marriage equality.” The act would replace “husband” or “wife” with “spouse” or “married individual” (one person) and “husband and wife” with “married couple” (two people). But why, by the Left’s logic, should marriage be restricted to two people? The Supreme Court stated in the Obergefell decision that Americans have a constitutional right “to define and express their identity,” so if, say, one man and six women wish to define their identity as a marital unit, why should the tax code — or, for that matter, the rest of federal law — continue to enshrine “prejudice and discrimination” against their desire for (as the court put it) “love, fidelity, devotion, sacrifice and family”?
Both the House and Senate bills reflect the outsized political power the homosexual lobby wields, particularly in the Democratic Party. How many other pressure groups could get their desired legislation introduced in Congress so quickly and with the support of so many lawmakers?
The House bill also reflects another political consideration. Capps’ press release claims her bill “would not only ensure that the code reflects marriage equality, but it could also make several positive changes to the U.S. Code by removing areas of gender discrimination written into federal law. For instance, it is currently illegal to threaten the President’s wife — but not the President’s husband. Capps’ bill would update the code to make it illegal to threaten the President’s spouse.”
This is an obvious reference to the likelihood that former First Lady, senator, and secretary of state Hillary Clinton will be the Democrats’ 2016 presidential nominee. Democrats want to be sure that if she’s elected, her husband, former President Bill Clinton, will be protected by law. But if Bill Clinton does move back into 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, he won’t need protection; White House interns will.