Pence: “I Believe In Traditional Marriage”
By Mike Perleberg
(Fort Wayne, Ind.) – At the same time a Duck Dynasty star’s comments about homosexuals are causing a media firestorm, Indiana’s Governor is repeating his stance on the issue of gay marriage.
Mike Pence reiterated his support for traditional marriage as he outlined his roadmap for improving the well-being of Hoosier families and communities during a speech in Fort Wayne Thursday.
“I know that the issue of family and particularly the issue of marriage will be in discussion in the upcoming session of the General Assembly. Let me just say that there are good people on both sides of the issue. My position on the issue of marriage is fairly well known. I believe in traditional marriage. But however the General Assembly deals with that issue, I also believe our conversation about family has to be more than just a debate over definitions,” Pence said.
The governor’s comments come as Indiana lawmakers prepare to vote on a proposed constitutional amendment that would define marriage in Indiana as between one man and one woman. House Joint Resolution 6 already earned approval from the General Assembly in 2011, and will go to voters next November if lawmakers pass it during the 2014 legislative session.
Indiana law already restricts marriage and civil unions for same-sex couples, but putting a gay marriage ban in the state constitution would make the rule harder to reverse in the future.
Pence also touched on the topic of single parents during his Thursday address at the Boys & Girls Club in Fort Wayne. He said that his sister was a single mother of three and his wife, Karen, was raised most of her youth by a single mom.
“So nothing of what you will hear me say today is borne of anything but a deep sense of compassion for, and a renewed commitment, that the state of Indiana is going to continue to keep our promises to our single parents, so long as I’m Governor,” he started.
Pence then asked that citizens be honest about the impact that unmarried child bearing has on communities. He referred to an idea called the Success Equation from the American Enterprise Institute which used statistics to determine that a person will have an “infinitesimal” chance of being poor if they do three things in life.
“Those three things are: if you finish high school, if you get a job, and if you wait until you are married to have children. The percentage of people who do those things and find themselves in persistent poverty are almost nonexistent,” Pence said.
Pence laid out other points in his 2014 roadmap for the well-being of Hoosier families and communities:
-Establish a voucher pre-K program for low-income families
-Continue to improve educational outcomes by promoting innovation in the classroom and by increasing educational options for families
-Increase the exemption for parents and children in Indiana’s tax code
-Expand and improve adoption in Indiana by offering a credit to offset adoption expenses and by removing barriers to adoption
-Seek approval to bring health care coverage to more Hoosiers through the Healthy Indiana Plan
-Improve our conservation efforts
-Expand access to the Military Relief Fund