Guide to the Issues:
Domestic Partners/Civil Unions
Domestic partner benefits are really another way of providing marriage benefits for homo-
sexual partners and, in some instances, cohabiting men and women. At the heart of the
issue lies the definition of marriage and family. It touches on the fundamental aspects of
our social and cultural order. The implications go far beyond health care benefits. The
issue represents a significant step in overhauling the mores of society. Marriage is a
sacred institution rooted in the created order and nature. Ultimately, redefining marriage
places the foundation of our society at risk.
Redefining the family beyond heterosexual marriage would lead to cultural confusion and
societal anarchy. In essence, it would be a declaration that it is no longer the standard of
society to include a mother and a father in the lives of children. By definition, homosexu-
al couples exclude one or the other. The definition of family shifts from a one-man, one-
woman relationship to a “relationship of love”—the rationale given by gay activists for why
they should be allowed to marry. Ultimately others involved in alternative arrangements
will claim that their relationships of “love” are worthy of social recognition, whether they
are bigamous, polygamous, or even incestuous relationships.
Grounds for objecting to domestic partner arrangements must rest first and foremost on
the declaration that legitimate marriage can exist only between one man and one woman.
Society deems this relationship of such importance that it grants privileges and benefits
to marriages and families that it does not afford other relationships.
The state government must not take it upon itself to overhaul the definition of marriage or
to change the standard of family in society. To do so would lead to long-term destructive
• It is contrary to the state’s current variety of health problems. Data
Talking Points policy. The state legislature passed from the Centers for Disease
the Defense of Marriage Act Control and the Justice
• It is reasonable to treat married (DOMA), and state law limits mar- Department’s Bureau of Justice
couples differently than those in riage benefits to spouses and Statistics found that rates of
other relationships. State law dependent children for local units domestic violence for homosexuals
requires a married person to sup- of government. are 4 to 25 times the rates for mar-
port his or her spouse, but it ried couples (Gay 2002). The inci-
imposes no such requirement on • Lack of equity for family mem- dence of AIDS is approximately 21
unmarried partners. An unmarried bers. Current family members such times higher among homosexual
partner can terminate a domestic as an elderly parent, grandchil- men than heterosexual men.
partnership with no legal penal- dren, ailing grandparent, or adult
ties, something a married person child are not eligible for benefits. If • Morally wrong. Domestic part-
could not do legally. Therefore, it is we truly want to help family mem- ner benefits force taxpayers to sub-
reasonable for the state to recog- bers, these individuals should be sidize behaviors many would
nize the additional legal duty of helped first. object to for moral and ethical rea-
support imposed on state employ- sons.
ees by covering spouses of married • Benefits are costly. Domestic
employees but not unmarried partner benefits subsidize individ- • Fairness issue. A state employee
partners. uals who are at a higher risk for a who cares for his disabled, ailing
grandmother cannot get coverage are not married but are cohabiting • Domestic partner benefits will
for her under his state employee are excluded from coverage simply serve as a “homosexual recruit-
insurance plan, but under domes- because they are not homosexuals. ment program” since no other indi-
tic partners proposals, the state viduals will benefit from this pro-
will cover the unmarried same-sex • Bad employee policy. Strong posal. Proponents of domestic
partner who is fully employed. marriages and families are essen- partners benefits argue it is neces-
This is fundamentally unfair to tial for a productive employee and sary to attract good employees.
individuals who care for another workforce. Domestic partnerships, This is disingenuous because it
person but don’t have a sexual whether homosexual or heterosex- does nothing for the 99.5 percent
relationship with that person. ual, are inherently unstable rela- plus of the potential workforce
tionships. A British medical journal ineligible for these benefits. If the
• Accountability problem. There is reported that in the Netherlands, a state wants to recruit the best
no requirement that the domestic country that officially recognizes employees, it should propose
partners even live together. What is homosexual relationships, male something for all potential
to prevent a state employee from homosexual relationships last an employees.
covering a friend or continuing to average 1.5 years, and gay men
cover an ex-partner? have on average eight partners a • Unwise financial expenditure.
year outside their “committed” Marriage benefits for homosexual
• Same sex domestic partner bene- relationship. Granting benefits partners represent an unnecessary
fits violate the state’s Human does not make these relationships expense that should be dropped
Rights Act by discriminating more stable but only gives incen- given all the demands for revenues
against individuals based on sexu- tives for more people to enter into from other interests.
al orientation. Heterosexuals who such arrangements (Xiridou, 2003).
Gay domestic violence finally measured. (2002). Family Research
Report. Journal of the Family Research Institute, vol. 16 n. (8).
Retrieved on December 19, 2003 from: http://www.familyre-
Xiridou, Maria, et al., “The Contributions of Steady and Casual
Partnerships to the Incidence of HIV Infection Among
• Pass a constitutional marriage amendment prohibiting Homosexual Men in Amsterdam,” AIDS 17 (2003): 1029-38. Can
the state from recognizing homosexual “marriages” and be found at the Official Journal of the International Aids Society
Web site: http://www.aidsonline.com/
related civil unions and domestic partnerships. Marriage
should be limited to one man and one woman, and mar-
riage benefits should be afforded to only married couples.
• Prohibit Minnesota state government from granting The Minnesota Family Institute:
domestic partner benefits to state employees. a non-profit, non-partisan,
• Prohibit any Minnesota unit of government from requir-
ing private companies doing business with that govern- 2855 Anthony Lane South, Suite 150
mental body to provide domestic partner benefits to the Minneapolis, MN 55418-3265
company’s employees. Phone: 612-789-8811, Fax: 612-789-8858,