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Mary Cheney’s Partner ‘Will Have No Legal Relationship With Her Child’ Under Virginia Law

By ThinkProgress  

"Mary Cheney’s Partner ‘Will Have No Legal Relationship With Her Child’ Under Virginia Law"

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The Washington Post reported today that Mary Cheney and her partner of 15 years, Heather Poe, are expecting a baby. The right wing is already on the attack:

Janice Crouse of Concerned Women for America described the pregnancy as “unconscionable.”

“It’s very disappointing that a celebrity couple like this would deliberately bring into the world a child that will never have a father,” said Crouse, a senior fellow at the group’s think tank. “They are encouraging people who don’t have the advantages they have.” …

Carrie Gordon Earll, a policy analyst for the conservative Christian ministry Focus on the Family: “Just because you can conceive a child outside a one-woman, one-man marriage doesn’t mean it’s a good idea.”

Cheney and Poe will also face discrimination from Virginia state law. According to Equality Virginia:

While there are no specific Virginia laws addressing the custody and adoption rights of gays and lesbians, Virginia courts have routinely discriminated against gays and lesbians by finding that the parent’s status as gay or lesbian is not in the “best interests” of the child.

The result, according to Jennifer Chrisler of Family Pride, is that Poe will “have no legal relationship with her child.”

“In the state of Virginia, it’s very difficult for lesbian couples to have children together,” says Chrisler. “Heather Poe will have no legal relationship with her child. She can’t adopt as a second parent. She won’t have her name on the birth certificate.

Asked what the couple could do to give Poe some legal rights as a parent, Chrisler advised: “Move to Maryland.”

UPDATE: AmericaBlog has more.

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