Eagle Forum Legislative Alerts

Friday, March 02, 2012

Why Do We Subsidize Marriage Absence?

The passage of so many state constitutional amendments in support of the traditional marriage of a man and a woman, plus the overwhelming passage of the federal law called the Defense of Marriage Act in 1996, known as DOMA, prove that the majority of Americans believe that traditional marriage should be favored and benefitted in our laws. Why, then, do we allow nearly a trillion dollars a year to be given in handouts of cash and benefits to subsidize non-marriage, that is, people having babies without getting married? As Ronald Reagan said, if we subsidize something we will get more of it, and indeed we do. 41% of the babies born in the U.S. last year were illegitimate; most of them will grow up without fathers in the home.

Marriage has been discriminated against by the vast expansion of the welfare state launched by London Johnson's War on Poverty in the 1960s. Enormous subsidies are handed out from the U.S. Treasury through more than 70 means-tested programs, mostly to unmarried moms with children. This money costs the U.S. taxpayers more than $800 billion a year, which is more than the defense budget. The absence of marriage is the biggest cause of poverty and a major cause of unbalanced budgets and our colossal national debt. Any candidate who claims to be pro-marriage should favor eliminating the sections of the tax code that reward non-marriage with lower taxes. Family allowances and child credits should be reserved for married parents who are raising their own children.

Liberals want to continue these handouts which subsidize non-marriage and illegitimacy because that creates dependency on government, and, in turn, creates votes for Democrats. We should not let partisan politics dictate our marriage policy.

Listen to the radio commentary here:

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