There is dispute over the
proposed Colorado legislation but as far as Dr. James Dobson is
concerned, no dispute about his stance on marriage. Focus on the
Family says his support of Colorado Senate Bill 166 does not reflect a
change in his long-standing opposition to homosexual marriage or
The legislation was introduced by Colorado state Senator Shawn Mitchell, who is described as a
conservative pro-family Republican.
After Dobson announced his support of
Senate Bill 166, Dr. Paul Cameron, president of the Family Research
Institute in Colorado Springs, Colorado (not to be confused with the Family
Research Council in Washington D.C.) called the decision
In a statement released by his office,
Cameron said "The...bill is a political compromise that would
provide gay and lesbian couples with many of the benefits of marriage
without having to be married." He refers to is as
"marriage-lite." He accused Dobson of endorsing gay
In a strong response to Cameron Dobson
said, "I donít know what in the world has gotten into Paul
Cameron that made him make a statement like this. Iíve never endorsed
any bill granting gay partners legal rights currently reserved for
married couples. That is sheer nonsense."
There was also an article critical of
Dobson posted briefly on the website of conservative commentator and
former presidential candidate Alan Keyes. It was written by a
frequent contributor to the site at www.renewamerica.us,
Andrew Longman. After being contacted and told that Dobson was not
supporting the homosexual agenda, the article was taken down and
apologies posted by both Keyes and Longman.
According to a 2/15/06 article on Focus On The Family's CitizenLink web
site, the Colorado legislation would streamline certain legal
relationships that are already allowed under Colorado law such as powers
of attorney, decisions about medical care, and administration of
property after death.
Dale Schowengerdt, legal counsel for
the Alliance Defense Fund is quoted as saying that Senate Bill 166
does not give
benefits based on status, such as homosexuality, which is true of civil
unions and domestic partnerships. Homosexual activists don't like the
bill because it doesn't go far enough to accomplish their goal of
homosexual marriage or full domestic partnerships. Schowengerdt
adds that several states have
similar laws and that, in his view, they actually protect marriage.
Focus on the Family says that Dobson's support of reciprocal-beneficiary
legislation is not new. Focus supported such a bill in Hawaii in
1997 that helped protect marriage in that state from redefinition.
"All this bill does is say: If
you have a need to be in one of these contractual relationships with
someone you legally can't marry, you could do this through a notarized
contract filed with the county clerk and ó instead of paying thousands
of dollars to an attorney for individual contracts ó you can have one
packaged contract offered to you," the article explains.
Carrie Gordon Earll, director of issues analysis for Focus on the Family
Action, is quoted as saying that the bill does not advance
homosexuality. It helps a lot of people such as parents with a
disabled adult child living at home, sisters sharing property, grandparents and
grandchildren and many other people who would choose those closest to
them to have power to fulfill legal wishes for them. In other words, anyone who would
have normally had to go through a complex and expensive process to
define an important legal relationship that is not marriage.
Cameron disagrees and says the bill grants homosexual couples some of
the benefits currently reserved for married couples and their families
and that Dobson's endorsement of the bill advances the cause of