Virginia's Randy Forbes trying to remove gay-inclusive 'Parent' from Fed forms

Posted by JD Uy
February 14, 2011 5:28 PM |

''Symbolism is important and this legislation seeks to preserve the sacred relationship mothers and fathers share with their children.  Referring to parents as "Parent 1" or "Parent 2" on official government documentation is a bureaucratic attempt to redefine traditional parent roles.  These subtle, but nonetheless significant, changes undermine the traditional American family relationships that have served as the bedrock of our nation since its inception.''

Randy Forbes, a Member of the US House from Virginia's 4th District. In a press release, he announced that he has introduced HR 635. The stated purpose of the bill:

''To require that all Federal agencies, contractors, and government-sponsored enterprises use the words 'mother' and 'father' when describing parents in all official documents and forms.''

Observers see this as his attempt to undo the use of gay-inclusive terms. The US Department of State announced in December that it would change certain government forms for "gender-neutral" accuracy. They were to read "Parent" instead of "Mother" and "Father." But the anti-gay Family Research Council complained, and it was soon announced that the forms would read instead: "Mother or Parent 1" and "Father or Parent 2."

Rep. Forbes (R) has a serious history of opposing equal rights for gay and lesbian families. From his own website:

  • Supporting Traditional Marriage.  Congressman Forbes cosponsored (H.Res.1607) disapproving of Chief United States District Judge Walker’s decision to strike down California’s Proposition 8 and hereby redefine traditional marriage.
  • Spoke on the House floor in opposition to hate crimes in defense bill. Congressman Forbes led a Motion to Instruct Conferees to reject a hate crimes amendment attached to the Defense Authorization bill and discussed the impact such an amendment would have on religious speech. The Motion to Instruct was defeated by a vote of 178-234.  
  • Supported the definition of marriage as one man and one women. Congressman Forbes cosponsored H.R. 2608, which would define marriage as one man and one woman in the District of Columbia. Earlier this month, the Council of the District of Columbia voted 12-1 to recognize same-sex marriages.
  • Cosponsored H.J.Res.50, the Marriage Protection Amendment. This resolution would amend the United States Constitution to define marriage as between one man and one woman.
  • Signed a letter to Attorney General Eric Holder asking him to defend and enforce the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which has been federal law since 1996. DOMA provides that states cannot be forced by residents of another state to recognize same-sex marriage, and that for purposes of federal law, marriage is the union of one man and one woman. On March 3, 2009, Gay and Lesbian Advocates and Defenders (GLAD) filed a lawsuit in the United States District Court in Boston, Massachusetts on behalf of same-sex couples who have been deemed married by the state of Massachusetts. These couples are now seeking federal benefits including pensions, Social Security, and joint tax filing status from the federal government on the basis of those “marriages.”  Their claim is that DOMA is unconstitutional because it protects the federal government from having to recognize such unions.
  • Agreed to cosponsor the Defense of Marriage Amendment to amend the United States Constitution to protect the traditional definition of marriage.  This proposed amendment would (1) define marriage in the United States as a legal union of one man and one woman; (2) expressly prohibit the judicial power of the United States or of any state from being used to redefine marriage as anything other than a union between one man and one woman; and (3) resolve questions relating to the constitutionality of the Defense of Marriage Act by incorporating language which would prohibit the courts from imposing the policy of one state on other states.
  • Voted to uphold the definition of marriage as between one man and one woman by opposing H.R. 3685, the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA). H.R. 3685 would prohibit employers from discriminating against employees based on “actual or perceived” sexual orientation. Congressman Forbes offered a motion that would have preserved the traditional definition of marriage as between one man and one woman, by ensuring that nothing in the Act could be construed to modify, limit, restrict, or in any way overturn any State or Federal definition of marriage as between one man and one woman, including the use of the Act as a legal predicate in litigation on the issue of marriage. Specifically, this would have prevented courts from citing ENDA as justification for striking down so-called “discriminatory” marriage laws in the 49 of 50 states that currently restrict marriage to between one man and one woman. The motion failed and Congressman Forbes voted against final passage of H.R. 3685.
  • Cosponsored the Marriage Protection Act to stand up for traditional marriage values and protect traditional marriage from being subject to activist court decisions.

Much of the rest of his legislative claims center around support for adoption and foster care, opposition to all abortions, calling for the right to expression religion in political areas, and injecting the recognition of "Judedo-Christian" contributions into law.

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