A panel in Arizona, where voters once turned down a constitutional ban on gay marriage, approved a plan Tuesday to provide taxpayer-subsidized health coverage for the domestic partners of state employees and retirees.
The Governor's Regulatory Review Council, which has the final say over many agencies' proposed rules, voted 4-0 to approve changes floated by the Department of Administration with support from Gov. Janet Napolitano, a Democrat. Some Republican legislators opposed the move.
Dependents of domestic partners also will qualify. Employees will be able to sign up for benefits as of Oct 1.
Cue the predictable whine from the homophobes:
Critics said the benefits rule changes would undermine the institution of marriage, burden the state with added costs at a time of budget trouble and, by doing it through rule changes, trample the Legislature's policymaking role.
Yeah, that's the one.
Look, guys, it's really this simple: if you don't want marriage undermined, then let gay couples get married. Otherwise we're just going to have to create all these work-around alternatives to marriage that satisfy no-one.