Daniels unsure of same sex marriage ban's impact at Purdue

Oct 31, 2013

Purdue’s president says a consensus must be reached before the university takes a stance on such a divisive issue as same sex marriage. Even then, Mitch Daniels says he’s not sure the university should get involved.

Purdue President Mitch Daniels
Credit Purdue University

“It’s just a subject to be approached, I think, with some reflection and some caution,” he says. “You also have to say, you know, once you’ve done one of these, there might well be others and not sure what those (issues) might be or whether we’d be glad.”

Daniels says Indiana already has a law that prohibits same sex marriage, so he’s not sure the amendment would change anything.

“I hope that Purdue’s open and inclusive – outspokenly inclusive – attitude, actions that have been taken here – the new (Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender and Queer) Center of course being the one recent example – make it perfectly obvious this is a very good place and very tolerant place to work.”

Those against the proposed constitutional amendment say it is more restrictive than the state law and would prohibit civil unions. They say that would prevent state universities from offering benefits to same-sex domestic partners, which Purdue currently offers.

The current law (IC 31-11-1-1) states:

Sec. 1. (a) Only a female may marry a male. Only a male may marry a female. (b) A marriage between persons of the same gender is void in Indiana even if the marriage is lawful in the place where it is solemnized.

The proposed constitutional amendment (HJR-6) states:

Section 38. Only a marriage between one (1) man and one (1) woman shall be valid or recognized as a marriage in Indiana. A legal status identical or substantially similar to that of marriage for unmarried individuals shall not be valid or recognized.

Indiana University President Michael McRobbie announced earlier this week his university’s opposition to the amendment.

If the General Assembly approves House Joint Resolution 6 next year, all Hoosier voters would decide the matter in the November General Election.