After the Massachusetts Supreme Court legalized gay marriage in 2003, then-governor Romney thwarted efforts to change the birth certificate entry for “father” to “father or second parent,” requiring his lawyers to sign off on each individual birth certificate. Murray Waas reports on Romney’s “extraordinary effort” to this effect – at the expense of gay parents and, especially their children, denied by Romney himself from having two parents on their birth certificates:
The practice of requiring high-level legal review continued for the rest of Romney’s term, despite a warning from a Department of Public Health lawyer who said such a system placed the children of same-sex parents at an unfair disadvantage. Crossouts and handwritten alterations constituted “violations of existing statutes” and harmed “the integrity of the vital record-keeping system,” the deputy general counsel of the department, Peggy Wiesenberg, warned in a confidential Dec. 13, 2004, memo to Mark Nielsen, Romney’s general counsel.
The changes also would impair law enforcement and security efforts in a post-9/11 world, she said, and children with altered certificates would be likely to “encounter [difficulties] later in life . . . as they try to register for school, or apply for a passport or a driver’s license, or enlist in the military, or register to vote.”
Meanwhile, Obama has endorsed all four state initiatives for marriage equality.