And I don't mean his campaign office, since they were smart enough to send out this release to *ahem* clarify McCain's position on gay and lesbian adoption. I mean the McCain Central in his head.
"McCain could have been clearer in the interview in stating that his position on gay adoption is that it is a state issue, just as he made it clear in the interview that marriage is a state issue. He was not endorsing any federal legislation.
McCain's expressed his personal preference for children to be raised by a mother and a father wherever possible. However, as an adoptive father himself, McCain believes children deserve loving and caring home environments, and he recognizes that there are many abandoned children who have yet to find homes. McCain believes that in those situations that caring parental figures are better for the child than the alternative,"
Here's what McCain said this weekend:
Mr. McCain, who with his wife, Cindy, has an adopted daughter, said flatly that he opposed allowing gay couples to adopt. "I think that we've proven that both parents are important in the success of a family so, no, I don't believe in gay adoption," he said.
It was a pretty out-of-even-far-right mainstream statement, implying that gay and lesbian singles shouldn't be allowed to adopt (a position that only the state of Florida takes), and, I suppose, that heterosexual singles shouldn't be allowed to adopt either (I don't know of any state that believes that).
Now the campaign released a statement with regurgitated far-right gobbledygook about a "preference" for straight parent, about it being the "ideal" for no reason other than they hate gays and lesbians and not straights.
It's the far more polished version of the extremism that McCain was spewing, since it's used to justify basically the same policy. But it sounds better to middle America, so they go with that instead. John McCain apparently didn't do his homework on this one.
Update: TBP contributor Dustin Kight just emailed me about the Family Equality Council's press release on this matter:
BOSTON, MA -- The following statement can be attributed to Kara Suffredini, Esq., Director of Public Policy at Family Equality Council:
Senator McCain's comment in the New York Times on Sunday, July 13, stating, "I think that we've proven that both parents are important in the success of a family so, no, I don't believe in gay adoption" demonstrates a lack of knowledge and understanding of the many kinds of families that exist in the United States. The Family Equality Council, the national organization working to ensure equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender families, is disturbed and disappointed that a presidential candidate would make such a biased and ill-informed statement about the most "successful" kind of family.
These are the facts about American families. According to the 2000 census, the vast majority--more than 75%--of American households differ in structure from two married, heterosexual parents and their biological children. We are a nation of blended and multi-generational families, adoptive and foster families, and families headed by single parents, divorced parents, unmarried parents, same-sex couples and more. As an adoptive parent himself, McCain should be well aware of this. As a presidential candidate, he should seek to honor and support the many kinds of families that exist, rather than dismiss the vast majority of households in this country as second-tier.
This is what is true about lesbians and gays raising children: 30 years of scientifically valid research universally demonstrates that LGBT families are just as nurturing for children's growth and development as heterosexual families.
Our society's primary child welfare organizations, such as the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Psychiatric Association and the National Association of Social Workers, have all issued statements supporting same-sex parents. The American Psychological Association has stated: "Gay and lesbian parents are as likely as heterosexual parents to provide healthy and supportive environments for their children."
All of which makes one wonder: What is the basis for Senator McCain's position?
American families may be diverse, but have at least one thing in common--we want our children to be safe, healthy, happy and supported. When our families are politicized, our ability to protect ourselves, each other and our children comes under attack. After eight years of similarly baseless attacks on our families, we hope that the next President of the United States will honor and support the vast array of families that daily work to raise happy, healthy and productive children. The Family Equality Council has a proud history of educating political leaders about our families and we welcome Senator McCain and others whose perspectives affect the most personal aspects of our lives to contact us and get to know the loving families he paints as "unsuccessful".