Dear Madam Chairman and members of the committee:
We sympathize with and regret the fact that some Floridians have experienced great personal distress and legal difficulties as a result of not having proper estate planning. Failing to obtain a valid Durable Power of Attorney (DPOA) can produce very unfortunate circumstances to persons of all types. These legal documents are regularly available and drafted by thousands of law firms and lawyers across Florida. The cost of a typical DPOA is modest and in some cases is not much more than the fee to apply for a domestic partnership.
In summary, domestic partnerships are unnecessary, bad public policy, and are dangerous for a number of reasons that may not be immediately obvious.
- They mislead the couples entering them into believing they have proper estate planning.
When it comes time to apply for Social Security, Medicaid or Medicare for an incapacitated partner, a couple will quickly learn that a domestic partnership is wholly inadequate and does not contain the necessary authority to make application on behalf of another individual. Personal and real property will not automatically pass to the holder of most domestic partnerships.
- Domestic Partnerships are not merely unnecessary, but are affirmatively dangerous because they are used as legal weapons by gay rights activists to advance same-sex marriages.
Historically activist courts, at the urging of gay rights activists, have used domestic partnerships as a legal precedent for overriding traditional marriage laws and legalizing same-sex marriages. In state after state where domestic partnerships were created, they were later used by courts or state legislative bodies to strike down valid marriage laws and legalize same-sex marriages. The creation of a domestic partnership is an affirmative legal threat to state Defense of Marriage Acts (DOMA) and to state constitutional amendment provisions which define marriage and prohibit same-sex marriages.
The attached exhibit The History of Domestic Partnerships Leading to Legalization of Same Sex Marriages documents and catalogues the consistent pattern and strategy of gay rights activists in states across America to use domestic partnerships as a legal weapon to force the adoption of same-sex marriages.
Homosexual marriages deny children the right to either a mother or a father and are therefore not in the best interest of children. Same-sex marriage laws also force all other statutes in a state to become gender-neutral and impacts children’s educational curriculum and textbooks where homosexuality is promoted as natural and morally acceptable alternative to heterosexual marriage. Finally, in a plethora of cases, gay marriage laws have been proven to become a threat to the individual religious liberties and free speech rights of those who have a traditional view of marriage.
For this and many other reasons, we strongly urge this committee to vote No to the creation of any domestic partnership or civil union scheme in Florida.
Florida Family Policy Council