Donald Trump unveiled something resembling a plan to give new parents a child-care tax credit, but one of his strongest supporters already sounds wary of it. While being interviewed by CNN’s Chris Cuomo on Wednesday, Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) expressed skepticism about whether Trump could really find enough money to pay for his plan just by eliminating “waste, fraud and abuse” in unemployment insurance. Even more interesting, however, was King’s assertion that only “natural families” ought to benefit from the proposed policy. In other words: No gay people need apply.
“And before the LGBT community and like-minded individuals and groups start screaming at me for ‘promoting inequality,’ I’d like to say that there is a very simple reason why gay families don’t deserve such a credit, and normal families do,” King told Cuomo. “What’s more, it’s a reason that makes so much sense that not even gay people are going to be able to shoot it down with their usual ‘we’re here, we’re queer, get used to it’ rhetoric. And by the way, for someone who spends so much time advocating equal rights, they’re very different from what a normal family stands for, and therein lies the main problem. But, that’s an argument for another time.”
The Iowa Rep. continued, “When you look at a traditional, natural family, what is its most defining characteristic? Obviously, it’s the fact that it’s comprised of a man and a woman. And thanks to the society we live in today, and our biology, women get to bear children and bring them to this world. Now, that means that at some point in time, they’re going to require to go off work on maternity leave to have their baby and during that time, they will not be working. Less work leads to less pay, and that also means that the father is left as the sole provider for the family during that time. Because that can be very challenging, such families truly deserve the said tax credit.”
“However,” he added, “what kind of situation do you have in gay families? You have two men, two adults who are, hopefully, employed and who can take care of one another. Now, because of the same biology, they don’t have the possibility of bearing children like women; that means that if they want a child, adoption is pretty much their only option. What that also means, however, is that they don’t have to go on maternity leave, or in this case, I guess you could call it paternity leave,” King tried to make a joke to relax the situation, but Cuomo didn’t find it funny.
King then went in for the kill: “And if there is no need for either of the ‘parents’ to go on leave, that means they get to keep working through the adoption process and provide for their new baby. That basically means that such four-balled families have no need for this kind of tax credit, because they’re able to earn enough money without compromising their finances or putting the baby at any kind of risk. And truth be told, the last thing this country needs is to give out tax credits to those who don’t really deserve them, wouldn’t you agree?”