American Foundation for Equal Rights

WSJ: Gay-Marriage Ban Comes at What Cost?

California’s gay-marriage ban is costing San Francisco $37.2 million a year and the state $490 million over three years, according to estimates revealed in the high-profile Proposition 8 trial. But those figures don’t tell the whole story, some experts say.

The numbers came to light during the trial in U.S. District Court here over the constitutionality of the gay-marriage ban established by voters in 2008. The figures pinpointing the ban’s impact on the local economy came from Ted Egan, chief economist in the San Francisco Controller’s Office, while the state numbers came from M. V. Lee Badgett, research director at the University of California at Los Angeles’s Williams Institute, a sexual-orientation-law think tank.

Mr. Egan and Ms. Badgett were called to testify by the San Francisco City Attorney’s Office and lawyers David Boies and Theodore Olson, who are seeking to overturn Proposition 8. Testimony in the trial concluded Wednesday, though the judge won’t hear closing arguments for some weeks.

Read the rest of Cari Tuna’s Wall Street Journal article here.