NH House Majority Caucus comments on HB 681 the Marriage Tax

House Republican Caucus Statement on Passage of House Bill 681 Increasing the State Marriage License Fee
On a vote of 223 to 146, liberals and liberal-leaning representatives voted to adopt House Bill 681, which penalizes marriages by increasing the state fee for a marriage license.  Their doing so supported arguments suggesting that those involved in marriage are more violent than unmarried, co-habitating couples and therefore need to be penalized, despite strong evidence to the contrary.
House Republican Caucus Leader Rep. William O’Brien (R-Mont Vernon) made the following remarks after the vote: “After years of claiming that they must promote marriage by expanding it to previously excluded relationships, the progressives have shown that what they really hoped to do is increase the tax on all marriages.  They claim that the tax is needed to combat domestic violence, even though studies show marriage itself substantially reduces domestic violence from that experienced by unmarried, co-habitation couples.”
House Republican Caucus Floor Leader Rep. Pam Tucker (R-Greenland) also noted that the rejection by all Democrats but two of a bill amendment that would have funded the same domestic violation prevention programs out of general funds will harm families that need those services. She said, “Under existing federal laws requiring funding that matches state funding of domestic violence programs, appropriating general funds would have ensured greater state funds and therefore much more in federal funds for this program. That opportunity has been lost.  It does seem that Democrats are more concerned about increasing a fee harming couples wanting to get married than they are about reducing domestic violence.  This is not what the people of New Hampshire expect.”