Last time we checked, only nine gay couples had even bothered entering into Rhode Island’s near meaningless civil unions. They provide gay couples with only 15 out of over 2,300 legal marriage rights and they don’t even exempt partners from estate taxes when their partners die. So it’s no surprise that the state has lost about $8 million from gay couples who leave the state to get married in other states and then return to have RI recognize them as actual marriages with more rights. What can we learn from this sad little illustration?
A recent study from the Williams Institute shows that gays enter marriages more than civil unions or domestic partnerships. So while straight swing voters might like hearing that LGBTs wanna get married to express our love and commitment (awwwww) the legal and tax benefits matter a heck of a lot more than they take for granted.