PA County Commissioner Compares Gay Spousal Benefits To Giving Money to Cats and Dogs

Lehigh County, Pennsylvania Commissioner Tom Creighton compared giving benefits to gay couples and "giving money out to people's pets" in his remarks promoting an amendment to the Lehigh County budget.  The amendment is meant to deny benefits for same-sex spouses employed by the county, Think Progress reports:

Creighton“The state has a ban on same-sex marriage, so why should the county be offering benefits for same-sex marriage?” Lehigh County Commissioner Tom Creighton asked. “I don’t feel the county should be looking for new ways to give away taxpayer money. Next it could be giving money out to people’s pets or whatever. No, it probably won’t go that far.”

Creighton made the remarks to promote his amendment to the Lehigh County budget, which would deny benefits to the same-sex partners of county employees “whose marriage is recognized in another state.” Lawmakers has been hoping to expand benefits, which could cost the County “much less than $219,000.”

Pennsylvania has a rich history of politicians who make unusual claims about same-sex marriage. The state’s Department of Health and Human Services recently compared gay and lesbian couples to 12-year-olds and during his 2012 presidential campaign, Rick Santorum, a former Pennsylvania senator, likened marriage equality to a napkin, not a paper towelwater, not beertea, not basketballa tree, not a car.

Though the comparisons can be amusing, especially coming from good ole' Santorum, you have to wonder when they will start to be challenged more vehemently in popular culture. Has Jon Stewart seen this? Someone should send it along.

What do you think? Are these kinds of statements too absurd to be taken seriously, or do they stand a chance of influencing people's opinions? 


  1. Bart says

    Yeah, I’ll take social comments about marriage equality from a wonky-eyed, guy wearing a skin chinchilla around his neck.

    He’s just mad because he hasn’t seen his tiny penis in about 15 years and his wife is bored with him.

  2. Sean says

    That illiterate troglodyte does realize that LGBT people including those county employees are tax payers also right? Oh that’s right LGBT people are required to be the slaves of heterosexual anti-gay trash.

  3. Bill says

    He probably meant it as a slippery slope argument.

    If the concern is saving the taxpayers money (his phrase “new ways to spend money”) then let’s put some of the old ways to spend money on the table too, starting with his salary. You can argue about whether or not he is overpaid, but from the picture he is quite obviously overfed.

  4. jlavoy says

    I work in Lehigh County, where the County Seat (and a large swath of the County) is Allentown. Lehigh County is not far at all from Philadelphia, and even borders the suburban region. His comments are totally out of step with the culture of Lehigh County. Allentown was one of the earliest counties in PA to have a nondiscrimination ordinance, and, a few years ago even moved to extend spousal benefits to LGBT city workers.

  5. says

    If he really wants to save taxpayer money, cut all benefits for opposite-sex marriages. A lot more of them, so a lot more money saved. Unless when he’s talking about saving taxpayer money in relation to benefits for gay couples that’s really not what he’s talking about …

  6. Tim says

    If he really wants to save money, give each employee the same benefit allowance to purchase whatever level of healthcare they want (cafeteria plan). This will end the argument that the gays are costing more & end subsidized healthcare for “their traditional families”.

  7. Jack M says

    I was born and raised in Lehigh County (Allentown), and unfortunately there are a lot of very uneducated people in that area, so I’m not surprised at this. Needless to say, I moved away from there.

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