State Representative Babette Josephs has long been a fierce advocate for Pennsylvania's LGBTQ community. Her latest campaign is legislation introduced in 2011 to exempt domestic partners from the state's onerous 15 percent inheritance task. Stalled in the House Finance Committee, Josephs' legislation faces an uphill battle in a Republican-controlled General Assembly.
Still, Josephs perseveres.
"They might not have any of this: joint liability in a mortgage lease or loan, primary beneficiary under life insurance, a primary beneficiary under the will, a durable power of attorney - I mean, most couples don't have any of that," said Josephs. "You have to show documents. You have to prove commitment."
So, why now? Wednesday also marked the introduction of another woman-hating piece of legislation from the architect of all that is oppressive in PA, State Rep. Daryl Metcalfe. This particular piece of ugly would forbid the Department of Health from funding Planned Parenthood. For anything. Nothing. No screenings. No services. Nothing.
My perception is that Josephs is fighting back, capitalizing on the momentum from President Obama's statement of support for marriage equality. Her legislation is not about redefining any relationship - simply adjusting the tax code to accurately reflect the emotional and financial commitments of couples, both LGBTQ and straight.