MADISON, WI – Yesterday, the state legislature’s Joint Finance Committee (JFC) approved on a party-line vote a budget motion that puts an end to the state’s statewide same-sex-only domestic partnership registry.
This registry became law as a part of Democrat Governor Jim Doyle’s 2009-2011 budget and was an effort to undermine Wisconsin’s Marriage Protection Amendment passed in 2006 by more than 59% of the voters. The registry in essential ways mimics marriage and gives numerous benefis to unmarried same-sex couples as if they are married.
The budget proposal would go into effect six months after the bill is enacted and grandfathers in existing domestic partnerships.
Two years ago this month, the United States Supreme Court decided in Obergefall v. Hodges that Wisconsin’s voters have no right to determine what marriage will be in this state and foisted marriage for same-sex couples on the entire country.
Julaine Appling, president of Wisconsin Family Action, said, “Since this registry was enacted, we have been working to repeal it. Not only does it undermine marriage, but it promotes discriminatory co-habitation. Now that the US Supreme Court has waved its magic wand and overridden the will of the people on marriage, there is no reason for this registry. Same-sex couples can get government-offered benefits of marriage by marrying. The state is rightly dismantling this unfair and detrimental registry.”
During the JFC discussion yesterday, Democrat Representative Katrina Shankland (Stevens Point) argued that rather than do away with the registry that it should be expanded to include heterosexual couples. The majority of JFC members rightly determined promoting marriage was a better approach than encouraging government-sponsored co-habitation.
“We are grateful for Rep. Jeremy Thiesfeldt initiating this proposal and for Representatives John Nygren and Dale Kooyenga for making the official motion as JFC members. The twelve members of JFC who supported the motion got it exactly right.
It’s time for this discriminatory registry to go and to stop pretending this registry is good or fair. It came in through the budget; it needs to be rescinded the same way,” noted Appling.