Saturday, July 10, 2010

Governor Linda Lingle on Civil Unions as Marriage by Another Name: A Correction

Another news-catch-up item: when I blogged earlier in the week about the veto of a same-sex civil unions bill by Hawaii Republican governor Linda Lingle, I wrote,

First, there's the claim that civil unions are "essentially marriage by another name," though study after study shows that civil unions do not, in fact, grant all the rights and privileges of marriage.

But as John Corvino has subsequently noted, the bill that Lingle vetoed explicitly stated that “partners to a civil union … shall have all the same rights, benefits, protections, and responsibilities under law … as are granted to spouses in a marriage.”

I stand corrected in my claim that Lingle was vetoing a bill that would not have afforded partners in a civil union the same rights as those who are married (in legally-allowed “opposite”-marriages).  But I do reiterate my point that studies of same-sex civil unions demonstrate that, in most places where they have been enacted alongside marriage permitted exclusively to heterosexual couples, civil unions do not provide all the rights and privileges of marriage.