In an interview Friday morning with WHP-TV, Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett (R) demonstrated that his own impressions of marriage equality are just as offensive as those of the state lawyers he tried to distance himself from in August. Arguing against a county clerk who’d begun issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples, the Department of Health suggested that those couples were just like 12-year-old children in being ineligible for marriage, but Corbett told WHP-TV anchor Sherry Christian that incest would be a better comparison:
CORBETT: It was an inappropriate analogy, you know. I think a much better analogy would have been brother and sister, don’t you?
CHRISTIAN: I don’t know. I don’t know… Umm… Yeah, I’m going to leave the comments to you and your team, but you did say it was inappropriate and you have a better phrasing that you think.
Corbett is also defending Pennsylvania’s law banning same-sex marriage from two lawsuits, but because Attorney General Kathleen Kane (D) believes the law to be unconstitutional, he is charging taxpayers $400 an hour to pay for outside counsel.
Momentum is on the side of marriage equality in Pennsylvania, with a new poll this week finding that 54 percent of voters across the state support a new bill that’s been introduced to legalize same-sex marriage.
Corbett offered an apology Friday afternoon, claiming that he didn’t intend to offend anybody, but he wanted to demonstrate the different categories of people ineligible for marriage:
CORBETT: My words were not intended to offend anyone. If they did, I apologize… I explained that current Pennsylvania statute delineates categories of individuals unable to obtain a marriage license. As an example, I cited siblings as one such category, which is clearly defined in state law. My intent was to provide an example of these categories.
Incidentally, it was just such a comparison to 12-year-old children that Corbett deemed inappropriate.