The politics of counting, or, Numbers never lie … except when they do
Press reports have been building all week about the Census Bureau’s announcement that it will not count same-sex couples legally married in California or Massachusetts (or in other countries) as”married.”The San Jose Mercury News broke the story, which was picked up by the Washington Post, and the AP story ran in the Times and who knows where else. Now People for the American Way has started a petition campaign calling on the Bureau to change its policy. It’s fascinating to me what legs this story has — the issue isn’t new (see below), but it’s newly visible because it’s being driven as a spin-off of the California drama.
Officials justify the decision as required by the Defense of Marriage Act (DoMA), which limits recognition of”marriage”to different-sex couples for purposes of all federal laws and agency actions. See the Bureau’s analysis, originally posted regarding the 2000 census: http://www.census.gov/population/www/cen2000/samesex.html