McWherter Kinda Sorta Walks Back Opposition to Same-Sex Adoption


Gubernatorial hopeful Mike McWherter ran into a bit of a political buzz saw last month when he told a blogger that he supports a ban on adoption by same-sex couples. Today McWherter revisited the issue in response to a question at this morning's Dem/progressive "Kitchen Cabinet" breakfast. His philosophical view is unchanged: "I believe that a child should be placed in a traditional loving home," McWherter said today. "I view it as a child rights issue, not any other group's issue."

But might there be a nuanced adjustment to his policy intentions? A month ago a campaign spokesman said that McWherter as governor "doesn't plan to introduce anything on this issue" but said "if push came to shove" he'd be "supportive of a ban." Today the candidate asserted that he doesn't want to see any change to the law. The questioner pressed him on that point, asking how it squares with the impression McWherter gave in October that he would sign a bill banning same-sex adoption if it crossed his desk. "I can't imagine a bill coming before me that I would sign," McWherter replied.

So has he walked back intentions to support a legal ban? Cue the hairsplitting: McWherter went on to explain that the issue is so "complicated" that he can't envision an acceptable bill that would "cover all circumstances" of adoption adequately. Complicated. Got it. So would he sign a same-sex adoption ban if a sufficiently uncomplicated bill covering "all circumstances" came along? Unclear.

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