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Highlights from DeBoer v. Snyder trial transcripts, day 2

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EqualityOnTrial has obtained trial transcripts from the DeBoer v. Snyder trial in Michigan, thanks to Kathleen Perrin and Equality Case Files. She did note that the list is “currently missing the second part of the first day, the testimony of David Brodzinsky, Ph.D. But, other than that, these are the transcripts from all the trial days to date.”

This is a recap of day 2 of the trial. (Day 1 only consisted of opening statements.)

Stanford University Sociology Professor Michael Rosenfeld testified on statistical data in studies related to parenting and families. In part two, in a follow up post, we’ll cover highlights from the testimony of University of Michigan Law School Professor Vivek Sankaran, who testified on the procedures for adoption in Michigan.

Asked by the plaintiffs’ attorney about data comparing the stability of same-sex couples and opposite-sex couples, he said:

What they found was that the breakup rate of the same sex couples who had civil unions was very similar to the breakup rate of the heterosexual couples. I think they differed by about one percentage point. It was like three percent compared to four percent. And the same sex couples who hadn’t gotten civil union had a much higher breakup rate, nine percent. So the Balsam, et. Al., study showed a pattern that my own data also shows which is that there’s a very similar breakup rate of same sex couples in the United States who have some kind of formal union compared to heterosexual married couples. And that the same sex couples without the formal union have a much higher breakup rate corresponding to the breakup — in my data I actually also have heterosexual couples who don’t have formal unions.

He also noted that “all of this literature predates what we would think of as full marriage equality for same sex couples” and that “what we know about the way formalization works among couples is we would expect that as they have more recognition and more legal rights that they would gain even more stability benefit from that recognition.”

Asked if there’s “any evidence in the research that legalization of same sex marriage has had any negative effect whatever on the stability of or the rate of opposite sex marriage?” He said:

Yeah, that’s an interesting question and the answer is fairly straightforward, there’s no evidence whatsoever that same sex marriage has any effect on heterosexual marriage.
[…]
So the Dinno and Whitney is the most recent paper in this area. It looked at year-by-year marriage rates for heterosexual couples and then tried to see if there was any impact on that year-by-year marriage rate by the legalization of same sex marriage and they determined very emphatically that there was no such effect.
[…]
And in my data set I’ve shown that the divorce rate for heterosexual married couples is no different whether they live in a state that has same sex marriage or don’t. So I don’t think there’s any credible evidence that same sex marriage has any negative effects.

He was asked about what is essentially the core of the state’s case:

Q: On the basis of everything that you know from the research in this area do you have an opinion as to whether children are in any way disadvantaged with respect to outcomes as a result of being raised by same sex parents? A: It’s clear that being raised by same sex parents is no disadvantage to children.

Q: From your prospective as a sociologist is there any rational basis at all for a claim that children develop better with a mother and a father than when raised by same-sex parents? A: There’s no basis for that.

The state’s cross-examination started with a lot of short questions and answers recalling the history of same-sex marriage:

Q: Doctor Rosenfeld, you understand that Ms. Deboer and Ms. Rowse, the plaintiffs in this case, would like to get legally married in the State of Michigan; correct? A: That’s my understanding. Q: And you understand that no state in this country has permitted same sex marriage until 2004 in Massachusetts? A: That’s my understanding as well. Q: So same sex marriage is a relatively new concept in the United States; correct? A: Okay.

Q: And would you agree with me that the definition of marriage in Michigan has always been understood to be between a man and a woman? A: I don’t know exactly how — I don’t know how the definition is always been understood, but —

Q: But it’s currently between a man and a woman; correct?

A: That’s sounds correct, yes.

Q: And have you no knowledge of it being any other definition; correct?

A: Correct.

Q: Okay. Thank you.

And the state focused on trying to discredit the witness:

Q: In preparing the report for this particular case you, in fact, had assistance from plaintffs’ counsel in determining what literature would be useful and relevant to the Court; is that correct? A: They did help me figure out what issues —

Q: Is that correct, yes or no? A: Yes.

Q: And plaintiffs’ counsel assisted you in determining what issues were relevant for purposes of your report; correct?

A: Correct.

Q: Thank you.

The stat’s lawyer wanted Rosenfeld to back up Mark Regnerus’ study, by focusing on the data used in the study:

Q: Thank you. And you would agree with me that the underlying data gathering process that Dr. Regnerus’ study used is mainstream social science; correct?

A: That’s correct.

Q: In fact, there are certain strengths to the data in the NFSS study; correct?

A: I’d like to qualify what those are if I may.

Q: We’re going to go through them so if you could just answer my question that would be perfect.

A: All right.

Q: There are strengths to the NFSS data; correct?

A: Yes.

Q: Okay. And those strengths include that it has a nationally representative — is nationally representative data which is an advantage over many data sources used to study same sex couples; correct?

A: What I would say about the advantage of national represent-sensitivity is it has some advantages and some disadvantages as well.

Q: Well, didn’t you, in fact, state those explicit words in a re-analysis that you did of Dr. Regnerus’ study?

A:Yes.

Q: So in other words, you specifically stated — and I quote. I mean, this is directly from your work, “Those strengths include it has a nationally representative data which has an advantage over many data sources used to study same sex couples.”

A: Correct.

Q: Okay. And another strength of that data is that the NFSS over sampled children raised at least in part by same sex couples allowing researchers statistical leverage; correct?

AThat’s correct.

Q: Okay. And another advantage is that it contains a detailed year-to-year family calender from which respondent’s childhood family structure history can be reconstructed; correct?

A: Correct.

At one point there seemed to be some confusion over survey data:

Q: And you actually used the same data source for that study as Dr. Regnerus did for his; correct?

A: Not exactly. We used the same survey company.

Q: You’re right. The same survey company. Okay. And where do you get your data from for that particular study?

A: The company is Knowledge Networks. I think it’s — has20a newer name which is GFK.

Q: Sure, but my point is, doesn’t the data in fact come from the survey?

A: They are different surveys. In other words, my study is a survey that I designed and his study was a survey that he designed.

Q: Sure by the same — done by the same entity. You designed it and it’s implemented by the same entity; correct?

A: Yes.

Q: And that’s where the data comes from.

A: That’s correct.

Q: So, in fact, your data source is the same —

A: No, the data sets are different, but the company that asks the questions of the subjects is the same. But the data source — usually when we think about data source we’re thinking about the data itself so the data itself are different. Two different data.

On redirect, by the plaintiffs’ attorney, he was again asked about Regnerus’ study:

Q: Is it correct to say that your concern with Professor Regnerus is not with the data but what he did with it.

A: That’s right. The data are perfectly reasonable but the analysis performed by Professor Regnerus doesn’t relate to the question that we’re studying here because it didn’t really relate to outcomes for children raised by same sex couples and it had many more of the subjects who had never lived with same sex couples at all. The failure to control for family transitions is a huge omission. So it’s the analysis that I take issue with, not the data. The data are perfectly good.

EqualityOnTrial plans to cover more from the transcripts today.

Thanks to Kathleen Perrin for this filing

For more information on DeBoer v. Snyder from The Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse, click here.

100 Comments

  • 1. Colleen  |  March 3, 2014 at 10:35 am

    Regnerus testifying now. Livetweets at @langeamyFOX2

  • 2. Colleen  |  March 3, 2014 at 10:51 am

    More live tweets from Deboer v Snyder: @TBaldas, @SteveFriess, @GJNeher

  • 3. Colleen  |  March 3, 2014 at 10:53 am

    "Steve Friess ‏@SteveFriess 13m
    Press room consensus: Mark Regnerus doesn't look happy to be here. And this is the easy part of his afternoon. #gaymarriage #lgbt"

  • 4. JimT  |  March 3, 2014 at 10:53 am

    Also a good live reporting feed being done by Gus Burns from MLIVE at http://www.mlive.com/news/detroit/index.ssf/2014/

  • 5. JimT  |  March 3, 2014 at 11:01 am

    Sorry, bad link – the live updates are being posted by the reporter in the comments area at this link http://www.mlive.com/news/detroit/index.ssf/2014/

  • 6. Colleen  |  March 3, 2014 at 11:03 am

    "Amy Lange ‏@langeamyFOX2 13s
    Regnerus is questioned by judge as to meaning of same sex – Regnerus admits the people in his study may not have even lived with parent"

  • 7. JimT  |  March 3, 2014 at 11:15 am

    Regnerus said the study that needs to be done to fully understand the impact of same-sex marriage "has not been done yet." He said it takes a "large" "nationally representative" study that looks at children from birth and the impacts of their parenting situation.

    They are onto the topic of Regnerus's New Family Structure Study (NFSS). The study screened 15,088 people. "I called into question the 'no differences' claim" by the APA, said Regnerus. They looked at 40 categories. In 25 of the categories there were differences between children of parents who were involved in same-sex relationships versus those that were in tact biologically.

    He said there were 175 cases in which mom had a same-sex relationship and 75 cases in which the father had a same-sex relationship.

    The results for kids of mothers who had lesbian encounters had more noticeable negative results. He said that's because of the small gay male sample, in part, and because children less frequently live with their fathers.

    Regnerus said the SFSS study was not his brainchild. It was sponsored by the Witherspoon Institute in Princeton, New Jersey.

    Renerus said the Witherspoon Institute is a socially conservative organization. "They hadn't funded social science research" prior. He said they paid $90,000 to have the study conducted. A leader of the Institute said it would be nice to have the study completed by the Supreme Court cases ruled on in 2012. Regnerus said he was "oblivious" to those cases, did not consider it a deadline and was focused only on doing a good job.

    Regnerus said he had no idea what the study would reveal and he told the Institute he intended to report whatever the data showed. It was not intended to address a legal question that's not its primary strength, Regnerus says.
    http://www.mlive.com/news/detroit/index.ssf/2014/

  • 8. Steve  |  March 3, 2014 at 11:21 am

    Oh, he is already lying. If he was so oblivious why did he file animus briefs on those cases?

  • 9. JimT  |  March 3, 2014 at 11:22 am

    Regnerus said the 40 outcomes looked at crime, relationships with mother, smoking, alcohol use, security feelings, sexual partnerships, experiences with sexual violence ..

    A Palo Alto company with a database of 50,000 to sample from.

    248 of 15,088 had parents, mother or father, who had a same-sex sex relationship in their lives.

  • 10. sam  |  March 3, 2014 at 11:24 am

    "animus briefs"

    sounds about right…

  • 11. Colleen  |  March 3, 2014 at 11:28 am

    "Steve Friess ‏@SteveFriess 19s
    Regnerus acknowledges he didn't control for "household transitions," meaning divorce, etc. "and that’s been the source of some contention."

  • 12. JimT  |  March 3, 2014 at 11:31 am

    The majority of the respondents were the result of a failed heterosexual relationship. Regnerus said he regretted the story that came out after and assigned sexual orientation to the parents, who were never interviewed for the study. He used LM, lesbian mother, and GF, gay father, in the first article that appeared after the survey. He said he changed the language to indicate it was children of mothers or fathers who had at some point been in same-sex romantic relationship.

  • 13. JimT  |  March 3, 2014 at 11:34 am

    Statements from the report being shown in the courtroom:
    "Same sex households are economically, racially, and socially more diverse than data collections like the (study) imply. Reported samples are predominantly Caucasion, well-educated, and middle- to upper class.

    "Adult respondents who reported a parental same-sex relationship …. " (They took it down. I'll get the rest later.)

    Friedman called for a 15 minute recess. back at 2:45 p.m.
    http://www.mlive.com/news/detroit/index.ssf/2014/

  • 14. sfbob  |  March 3, 2014 at 11:45 am

    "SOME contention" indeed.

    His study did not study what it purported to study. It shouldn't be surprising that his results are the source of contention.

  • 15. Colleen  |  March 3, 2014 at 11:48 am

    BTW– Earlier today, before Regnerus, Judge disallowed PHD in Philosophy candidate Sherif Gergis and as expert witness:

    "Steve Friess ‏@SteveFriess 3h
    ** JUDGE: "All he's bringing here is his opinions." "Someday you're going to be a great witness." #gaymarriage **"

  • 16. Steve  |  March 3, 2014 at 11:54 am

    That doesn't make any difference. It's just PR spin. Having had a same-sex relationship because you experimented or are bisexual doesn't make someone a worse parent either.

  • 17. Colleen  |  March 3, 2014 at 11:55 am

    "Amy Lange ‏@langeamyFOX2 1m
    Regnerus is back on the stand – still being questioned by the assistant AG, Kristen Heyse"

    So far this has all been direct questioning for Regnerus–will cross cause him to him EXPLODE???

  • 18. JimT  |  March 3, 2014 at 11:56 am

    Also reported earlier today by Gus Burns:
    Regnerus is talking about "reduced kinship," when a biological mother and father are not raising a child in the household together, "where family has been broken up."

    He said children exposed to reduced kinship is "not ideal" and considered "concessions" — he used foster care as an example. The state works to restore children in foster care to kinship relationships. He acknowledges that "reduced kinship" relationships are not ideal but maother-father households "are better, based on data" and "less likely to abuse or harm a child."

    "More likely to sacrifice for that child" and children" are more likely to flourish."

    Regnerus said "by definition" there is a reduced kinship relationship when a child is being raised in a same-sex marriage household.

    Regnerus said of his own kids, he usually paints them as better than they are. He says this is a tendency of all parents, so it's better to ask teens about themselves or their teachers; or wait until they are out of the house so they can reflect on their own lives.

    It sounds like the questioning is meant to discredit the American Psychological Association study that found no difference in children raised by same-sex parents: https://www.apa.org/news/press/response/gay-paren

  • 19. JimT  |  March 3, 2014 at 12:06 pm

    They're back and looking at a graph show earlier that shows the diversity respondents of the study that responded their mothers had same-sex relationships. only two cases involved kids born into homes with parents who were in same-sex. It peaks at age 14 when there were nearly 20 cases in which there was a mother with her partner in the same household. Regnerus said the charge illustrates the difficulty of tracking family stability because it changes over time.

    The interviews were with adults 18-39 reflecting on thier childhoods.

    Regnerus compared the results to "stability intact mom-and-dad households," which he said has "long been considered the ideal."

    The gist of his findings: Children with parents who participated in same-sex relation ships had worse outcomes than for children raised by heterosexual parents with in-tact relationships.

    Some poorer outcomes found by Regnerus study:

    more likely to be currently on public assistance"
    "they are more likely to have received welfare"
    "Less likely to be employed full-time"
    "More likely to be unemployed."
    "More likely to have STD"
    Less educated
    More likely to have cheated
    More marijuana use
    More smokers

    These findings, and others, come from Regerus's November followup to his initial study findings, he said.

    http://www.mlive.com/news/detroit/index.ssf/2014/

  • 20. JimT  |  March 3, 2014 at 12:12 pm

    55 percent were from failed heterosexual relationships as of age 1. Regnerus said there is a potential for source bias, but "less source bias than you might have in studies of young children."

    The data sample was made available in the fall of Nov. 2012, "because I said I would, becasue of scientific value" gained from sharing data. "It had long aggravated me that there had been data sets … that had not been made public because they were funded privately …

    he said he was under no obligation to share the data, as it was private, "but it was the right thing to do."

  • 21. JimT  |  March 3, 2014 at 12:22 pm

    Regnerus said 43 percent his study of those parents who had been in same-sex relationships were either Hispanic or black. He said this is not representative of other smaller convenience samples used by the APA that found respondents by posting flyers in gay book stores in three cities. "That is not an accurate representation of the underlying population," said Regnerus.

    He said his is more representative of "What is going on out there as a whole."

    Regnerus said a total of 85 in the study lived with mom and her partner for at least one year. 31 of those it as only up to a year before the person left the household or the respondent turned 18. He said the number dropped to about 21 percent for those who lived with lesbian mother and partner for at least two years. He said in only two cases did the child spend their entire upbringing with their mother and her same-sex partner. He says this data is reflective of instability in the family structure .

  • 22. Colleen  |  March 3, 2014 at 12:26 pm

    "Steve Friess ‏@SteveFriess 28s
    Of the 2 kids in study who stayed w same-sex parents from birth to 18, Regnerus says: "On average they looked pretty good."

  • 23. JimT  |  March 3, 2014 at 12:26 pm

    I'm looking forward to the cross examination which probably will happen tomorrow. I must say that Gus Burns coverage has been awesome. http://www.mlive.com/news/detroit/index.ssf/2014/

  • 24. Ragavendran  |  March 3, 2014 at 12:28 pm

    And this is during direct examination!

  • 25. bayareajohn  |  March 3, 2014 at 12:51 pm

    Is this the new name for magic Morman underwear?
    Or are those boxers?

  • 26. Colleen  |  March 3, 2014 at 12:52 pm

    Looks more and more like cross will happen tomorrow. Should be fun!

    "Steve Friess ‏@SteveFriess 2m
    I'm doubting Regnerus will be cross-examined today. It's already 4p and Judge Friedman doesn't seem to like to stay late."

  • 27. bayareajohn  |  March 3, 2014 at 12:55 pm

    Cross tomorrow gives the team overnight to work the best strategy from what's been said.

  • 28. Eric  |  March 3, 2014 at 12:56 pm

    And if he was only concerned with what the data showed, why did he submit the paper before all the data was gathered?

  • 29. davep  |  March 3, 2014 at 1:04 pm

    … and he said "VERY good" before he was on the stand. He's being dishonest again.

  • 30. Rik  |  March 3, 2014 at 1:06 pm

    Wow the state's attorney is terrible!

  • 31. palerobber  |  March 3, 2014 at 1:17 pm

    for those interested, a paper by Girgis et all called "What is Marriage?" can be found here: http://www.harvard-jlpp.com/wp-content/uploads/20

    (the mormon church cited this paper in their amicus brief in the Utah case)

  • 32. JimT  |  March 3, 2014 at 1:21 pm

    "The science is really young here," said Regnerus. Mine is "the study that came out with the most outcomes. Don't you think we should have more of these types of things. "

    "I really think it's too early to tell on a lot of these things." Until we have more data I think it's very important for state's to tread carefully regarding redefining marriage.

    Regnerus: "I'm not making a claim that same-sex orientation causes something" but its "associated with greater household instability."
    http://www.mlive.com/news/detroit/index.ssf/2014/

  • 33. palerobber  |  March 3, 2014 at 1:30 pm

    "Amy Lange ‏@langeamyFOX2
    Regnerus – the two kids in his study are okay but the odds are against it."

    huh? of the children raised by a same sex couple, 2 out of 2 had good outcomes (100%). those odds look pretty good to me! how are the "odds" against them?

  • 34. JimT  |  March 3, 2014 at 1:34 pm

    He said its a "pretty historically stable basis" that a man-woman parental relationship leads children to "flourish." On acceptance of same-sex couples: Regnerus said: "I don’t think it's a good idea." He said that opinion didn't impact his research, "the conduct of it." Regnerus says it is possible to have positive results in cases where there are two lesbian parents, but there is not enough data "to make claims and certainly to make significant changes." The state has to decide based on the entire population, he says. "That's why I think, the most prudent thing to do is wait and evaluate some of these changes over time before making any radical moves around marriage."

    "I think states are prudent when they say, 'This is what's best, this is what we want for our children,'" Regnerus said. he doesn't think there is sufficient data to say, as the APA did, there is no risk of having different outcomes in same-sex family households.

    "I think it is prudent to collect more data" before any significant changes are made. He says it should remain man and woman until there is more convincing data supporting that there is no risk to children of same sex parents.

    That's it for today: They are going to begin tomorrow with the cross-examination of Regnerus followed by testimony from Joseph Price, a BYU economist. Thanks for following. Myself or another reporter (Khalil) will be back with live updated tomorrow.
    http://www.mlive.com/news/detroit/index.ssf/2014/

  • 35. 5:10  |  March 3, 2014 at 1:34 pm

    "The fact is you're still a student. Someone else is still grading your papers," said attorney Ken Mogill, co-counsel for two Detroit-area nurses challenging the gay-marriage ban. Judge Friedman agreed. He barred Sherif Girgis from testifying at Michigan's gay marriage trial.

  • 36. JimT  |  March 3, 2014 at 1:36 pm

    I hope they rip his testimony to shreds on the cross exam tomorrow.

  • 37. Zack12  |  March 3, 2014 at 1:41 pm

    That is a big blow not only to this the bigots in this case but those who cite the paper he helped write.
    Having his testimony discredited like that hurts their side a LOT.

  • 38. ebohlman  |  March 3, 2014 at 1:43 pm

    That just floored me. How on earth could Michigan's lawyers think they could pass off a grad student as an "expert" in the field he's studying. Most psychologists will tell you that it takes a bare minimum of 10,000 hours (about five years of full-time work) in a field before you can even start to claim expertise in it. They're really scraping the bottom of the barrel here.

  • 39. Bruno71  |  March 3, 2014 at 1:48 pm

    He's just a blatant homophobe who now has testified to the presence of his own animus towards same-sex couples. Hopefully, he'll be exposed as just that as a result of this case.

  • 40. ABC  |  March 3, 2014 at 1:52 pm

    He was the lead author of a top book on the subject.

  • 41. Steve  |  March 3, 2014 at 1:55 pm

    He is a protege of NOM founder Robert George. I wonder why they didn't get Goerge to testify.

  • 42. Steve  |  March 3, 2014 at 1:56 pm

    Notice the two other names. Robert George is the founder of NOM and runs a virulently anti-gay "think tank" at Princeton (which also welcomed Regnerus). Ryan T. Anderson is another Catholic Taliban who is a relatively big in the "traditional marriage" circuit.

  • 43. Fr. Bill  |  March 3, 2014 at 2:47 pm

    One possibility is that he might be asked about the major donors to NOM, Witherspoon and other organizations he has been an active leader in.

  • 44. Randolph Finder  |  March 3, 2014 at 2:54 pm

    What is an economist doing as an expert witness?

  • 45. JayJonson  |  March 3, 2014 at 3:06 pm

    The University of Texas Sociology Department, where Regnerus teaches, has issued a statement disassociating itself from his study and pointing out that the American Sociological Association has found his work "fundamentally flawed." The statement reads:

    "Like all faculty, Dr. Regnerus has the right to pursue his areas of research and express his point of view. However, Dr. Regnerus’ opinions are his own. They do not reflect the views of the Sociology Department of The University of Texas at Austin. Nor do they reflect the views of the American Sociological Association, which takes the position that the conclusions he draws from his study of gay parenting are fundamentally flawed on conceptual and methodological grounds and that findings from Dr. Regnerus’ work have been cited inappropriately in efforts to diminish the civil rights and legitimacy of LBGTQ partners and their families. We encourage society as a whole to evaluate his claims."

    See more about this at The New Civil Rights Movement.

  • 46. Eric  |  March 3, 2014 at 3:21 pm

    Top, as in, many purchases by the anti-gay.

  • 47. Rob  |  March 3, 2014 at 3:30 pm

    Great news and great timing. Time for this "study" to be exposed in a court of law.

  • 48. MichGuy  |  March 3, 2014 at 4:02 pm

    It actually doesn't say what you posted above JayJonson; It actually says the following

    "Following is a statement by UT Austin and the College of Liberal Arts regarding sociology professor Mark Regnerus.

    Dr. Regnerus' opinions are his own. They do not reflect the views of the university. Like all faculty, he has the right to pursue his areas of research and express his point of view. We encourage the community of scholars and society as a whole to evaluate his claims"
    http://www.utexas.edu/cola/public-affairs/news/75

  • 49. JayJonson  |  March 3, 2014 at 4:05 pm

    You are posting the statement from the university. I posted the statement from the Sociology Department. Read the article at the link I posted.

  • 50. Jim  |  March 3, 2014 at 4:13 pm

    Thank you, @JayJonson. Here's a direct link to the statement from the chairman of the Sociology Department that you noted:
    http://www.utexas.edu/cola/depts/sociology/news/7

  • 51. MichGuy  |  March 3, 2014 at 4:13 pm

    Sorry, I take that back- Oh- I see that the Sociology Dept of the university also issued a statement expanding upon the UT statement which was a little shorter. Which is what you posted. http://www.utexas.edu/cola/depts/sociology/news/7

    I apologize ! :)

  • 52. Frisky1  |  March 3, 2014 at 4:13 pm

    Yes, great news. too bad the University of Texas Sociological department didn't speak up when UT swept any doubts about Regnerus' study under the rug back in 2012:

    "AUSTIN, Texas — The University of Texas at Austin has determined that no formal investigation is warranted into the allegations of scientific misconduct lodged against associate professor Mark Regnerus regarding his July article in the journal Social Science Research.

    As required by its Revised Handbook of Operating Procedures, the university conducted an inquiry to determine whether the accusations made by writer Scott Rose had merit and warranted a formal investigation. After consulting with a four-member advisory panel composed of senior university faculty members, the Office of the Vice President for Research concluded in a report on Aug. 24 that there is insufficient evidence to warrant an investigation.

    Provost and Executive Vice President Steven Leslie accepted the report on Tuesday and deemed the matter closed from an institutional perspective.

    As part of the inquiry, the university hired Dr. Alan Price to ensure that the inquiry was conducted appropriately and fairly. Price, a private consultant, is former associate director of the Office of Research Integrity in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Price found that the inquiry was handled in a manner consistent with university policy and indicated the process was “also consistent with federal regulatory requirements of inquiries into research misconduct.”

    The allegations raised by Rose fall under the university’s definition of scientific misconduct, which states, in part, that “ordinary errors, good faith differences in interpretations or judgments of data, scholarly or political disagreements, good faith personal or professional opinions, or private moral or ethical behavior or views are not misconduct.

    As with much university research, Regnerus’ New Family Structures Study touches on a controversial and highly personal issue that is currently being debated by society at large. The university expects the scholarly community will continue to evaluate and report on the findings of the Regnerus article and supports such discussion."
    http://www.utexas.edu/news/2012/08/29/regnerus_sc

  • 53. Frisky1  |  March 3, 2014 at 4:15 pm

    I've often wondered how much antigay hate money pours into Princeton to keep Robert George employed there. If the head of the KKK was a brilliant mathematician, would Princeton hire him too?

  • 54. Mike in Baltimore  |  March 3, 2014 at 4:39 pm

    Yes, UT and the College of Liberal Arts issued a statement.

    However, the Department of Sociology ALSO issued a statement (the statement is at the link provided by Jay Jonson), that has more words than the UT/CLA statement, but there is little to no difference between the two statements. And if you want to see the full statement from the Department of Sociology, please go here: http://www.utexas.edu/cola/depts/sociology/news/7

    Why are you appearing to defend Regnerus? Is it because you are a bigot?

  • 55. ebohlman  |  March 3, 2014 at 4:47 pm

    You have to remember that "scientific misconduct" is an extremely serious charge: it covers things like reporting results of experiments that were never actually conducted, serious violations of human-subjects research ethics, or deliberately falsifying the results of a survey to make them "support" a predetermined conclusion.. A researcher found to have committed scientific misconduct is essentially permanently ostracized from his field. The inquiry simply found that Regnerus hadn't done any of that.

    The finding in no way implies that Regnerus's results were correct or that his study was reliable. Sloppiness in research is not scientific misconduct, nor is drawing conclusions that go beyond what the data can support. Those merely indicate poor-quality research, and the inquiry didn't directly address the quality of his research.

    The journalistic analogy to scientific misconduct would be something like a reporter doing a tearjerker series about a born-addicted kid who never actually existed, or a music critic writing a review of a concert he didn't attend. You'll never work again as a journalist if you do those.

  • 56. MichGuy  |  March 3, 2014 at 4:56 pm

    Appearance is subjective. I am defending what appeared to be a mischaracterization of UT's public statement at first glance. There is enough difference in the short statement vs the long statement to draw a distinction and initially I had no knowledge of two separate statements from the same college. For example the Long statement seems to bash Regnerus with more affirmative language then that of the short statement which doesn't even have ANY language in it that affirmatively discredits the position of Regnerus. The short statement simply states that the Regnerus is not speaking on behalf of the college. But in the LONG statement it specifically states that Regnerus position is fundamentally flawed and innapropriate etc… Which goes a lot futhere in discrediting Regnerus.

  • 57. Frisky1  |  March 3, 2014 at 5:23 pm

    Absolutely agree with your point, but I think my comment still stands as I wasn't actually comparing the soc depts' words/conclusions with those of the 2012 investigation.

    What stopped the UT Sociological dept from issuing a similar statement as it did today, back in 2012,(or even in 2013) when this study done more or less in their name was under investigation and all over the papers? Why only now when their associate is potentially about to be handed his butt in court?

  • 58. Fr. Bill  |  March 3, 2014 at 5:31 pm

    The amount and source of the funding has always been a question in my mind. If I remember correctly he has also received a large sum to establish a legal institute at Stanford. It would seem that they are trying to give a patina of academic respectability to buttress their "beliefs".

  • 59. Mike in Baltimore  |  March 3, 2014 at 6:26 pm

    Maybe if you had clicked the link that was provided, you would have seen that there were TWO statements, not just one – one from the University as a whole, and a separate statement from the Department of Sociology. If you had done that, you would not have to backtrack and say (in effect) 'oops, I didn't see the link before commenting.'

    So again I ask, why are you appearing to defend Regnerus? I didn't ask you to analyze the UT statements defending or not defending Regnerus, I am asking YOU.

  • 60. JimT  |  March 3, 2014 at 6:27 pm

    The trial transcripts are at http://www.scribd.com/collections/4455287/DeBoer-

  • 61. Sagesse  |  March 3, 2014 at 6:32 pm

    The statement from the Sociology Dept. is so powerful. Oh to be in the courtroom for tomorrow morning's cross examination.

  • 62. Rick O.  |  March 3, 2014 at 7:04 pm

    Ummm… you'd watch your statements carefully if your funding was dependent on the Texas legislature.

  • 63. Rick O.  |  March 3, 2014 at 7:10 pm

    Well, good. The two children who were actually RAISED by SS couples survived. It would be fun to track down the other 246 for a film documentary, because I'll bet $5 245 of them support marriage equality.

  • 64. W. Kevin Vicklund  |  March 3, 2014 at 7:26 pm

    Why don't you read what he fucking wrote, jackass?

  • 65. Sagesse  |  March 3, 2014 at 7:29 pm

    I've often wondered why Princeton would be associated with him. I can't recall the trail, but I had the impression at one point that he brought the funding for his 'think tank' with him, from the likes of the Beckett Fund.

  • 66. W. Kevin Vicklund  |  March 3, 2014 at 7:39 pm

    Didn't they release a similar statement back then? Maybe I'm just confusing it with the journal's statement.

  • 67. Sagesse  |  March 3, 2014 at 8:15 pm

    Because Regnerus just crossed a line? It is one thing to do shoddy research and make speeches and write amicus briefs with a point of view. Going into court posing as an expert based on faulty methodology and murky ethics may have been just a step too far.

  • 68. Zack12  |  March 3, 2014 at 9:03 pm

    I get where some people wanted Girgis to be torn apart on the stand but lawyers for the plantiff have a job to do as well and letting someone they believe to be unqualified ramble on for two hours and present his options as fact would be a total failure of their job.
    Plus, his being dimissed does NOT bode well for him and the stupid book he co-wrote in the future.
    As for tommorrow, let's hope our side is on the ball. It's time for Regnerus to be torn apart.

  • 69. Kevin  |  March 3, 2014 at 9:05 pm

    The cracks in the GOP edifice of intolerance are growing wider with each passing minute.

    Republicans will file an amicus brief in support of same-sex marriage.
    http://www.nytimes.com/2014/03/04/us/republicans-

  • 70. bayareajohn  |  March 3, 2014 at 10:34 pm

    It pays to remember… these "beliefs" are mostly truly held, no matter how wrong.These right wingnuts we scoff at actually believe they are saving America from damnation. At least many of them, maybe most do… I have to feel some are going along for the gravy train, soaking up extremist money. But I know from personal experience with them in my family, and you should not forget, these folk are actually desperate and searching for some way to stop what they really think is a global slide into hell. So do NOT underestimate what they are capable of doing to support their position. They will spend til it hurts, and are willing to lie if it takes that to support their "truth".

  • 71. bayareajohn  |  March 3, 2014 at 10:45 pm

    "Mr. Regnerus, we've heard you expound on your study of how fragmented families have negative effects of the social success of their children. Given your opinion and the results of the study you support, consider children of a same-sex couple, if stabilized by legal recognition of their marriage and not stigmatized by a society trying to declare them not to be a family at all. Given your conclusion about fragmented families, you think children raised by a married same sex couple would be more or less likely to succeed than those in your study?"

    Then watch out for brain bits as his head explodes. There's no answer that doesn't damn him to reality.

  • 72. Vin  |  March 4, 2014 at 12:44 am

    Oh Mike, just go away already…

  • 73. Keith  |  March 4, 2014 at 5:32 am

    Mike must have a lot of personal problems. He needs to get a life.

  • 74. Rick O.  |  March 4, 2014 at 5:58 am

    Simpson and Kassebaum filing brief pro ME in 10th Circuit is HUGE in some circles – particularly Republicans who are conservatives but not part of the 20% voodoo fundamentalist church wing. My father is a typical Wyoming type (reactionary millionaire fleeing taxes and pretending the 47% doesn't exist,hobnobs with Foster Friese), and for him, Simpson is the equivalent of George Washington. Simpson's willingness to do this is proof positive the R's are splitting – deeply.

  • 75. USA, Michigan: Day 5 of t&hellip  |  March 4, 2014 at 6:00 am

    […] And finally, Equality on Trial has some of the trial transcripts. […]

  • 76. grod  |  March 4, 2014 at 6:30 am

    RIck and Kevin – can you please post the brief here when filed. G

  • 77. JimT  |  March 4, 2014 at 7:36 am

    Day 6 Live from the Michigan courthouse DeBoer v. Snyder trial, MLIVE reporter Gus Burns doing the reporting updates are in the “Comments” blue shadow box at http://www.mlive.com/news/detroit/index.ssf/2014/

  • 78. grod  |  March 4, 2014 at 8:11 am

    John: point. If society can do more to assist in stabilizing families, and Mr. R's two respondents who were well-raised by long-term parents suggests stable family, why would marriage equally not be a very positive developed ?

  • 79. Steve  |  March 4, 2014 at 8:39 am

    Because according to "Professor" Regnerus, marriage equality will cause straight men to demand more anal sex from their women folk.

  • 80. palerobber  |  March 4, 2014 at 9:41 am

    anyone have a link to the brief itself?

  • 81. RAJ  |  March 4, 2014 at 10:32 am

    Court is back in session w/ BYU economist Joseph Price:

    Steve Friess ‏@SteveFriess
    Judge swearing in Joseph Price, an aptly named @byu economist. #gaymarriage

    Steve Friess ‏@SteveFriess
    Price has already referenced his think-tank and group affiliations three or four times as "prestigious." #gaymarriage
    https://twitter.com/SteveFriess

  • 82. RAJ  |  March 4, 2014 at 10:34 am

    . . . Price on a tangent about his research into the history of gender roles in farming. Plaintiffs object, but judge allows it. #gaymarriage

    . . . Price is very, very proud of himself. Everything is prestigious and "intriguing."
    https://twitter.com/SteveFriess

  • 83. RAJ  |  March 4, 2014 at 10:38 am

    . . . A class of future lawyers from Cooling, UM, MSU, just crashed the #gaymarriage courtroom. Judge is explaining the case to them!?!?

    . . . Judge Friedman: "This case is a textbook case of the way cases should be tried. Remember this." #gaymarriage
    https://twitter.com/SteveFriess

  • 84. Colleen  |  March 4, 2014 at 10:40 am

    Wow. Having just caught up with the Gus Burns live feed and live tweets from @langeamyFOX2 and @SteveFriess, my only takeaway from Mark Regnerus is that he has no empathy or interest in any iteration of family structure not entirely in line with Catholic tradition. Divorce, remarriage, IVF, step parenting, even adoption, appear to be regrettable "concessions" as compared to the preferred permanent-heterosexual-monogamy-with-the-expectation-of-procreation model of family. This guy's not just a loon, he's a sincere loon.

    Also, he was bizarrely unable to take even a guess at the current divorce rates in the USA:
    "Amy Lange ‏@langeamyFOX2 3h
    Atty – what's divorce rate for heterosexuals?
    Regnerus – 2% – 24,000 married women per year…
    It would be guesswork…"

    However, yesterday he was able to cite breakup data ( source unknown) from Sweden:
    "Amy Lange ‏@langeamyFOX2 22h
    Regnerus talking about some Swedish data on stability – breakups – 30% for lesbians over 6 years, 20% for gays 12% for heterosexuals"

  • 85. Jon  |  March 4, 2014 at 10:42 am

    No, this is the actual game-over question line (and he reason I'm stunned they have him on the stand.

    Based on your study, do children tend to have positive outcomes when parents with gay attractions marry and have kids with people of the opposite sex?
    [Obviously not]
    Comparing studies X,Y,Z (on stable same-sex parenting) and your data, do children have better outcomes in stable same-sex families than in broken families studied in your data set.
    [Clearly yes]
    So, explain again how encouraging people with strong same sex attraction into opposite sex marriages is good for the children?
    […]

  • 86. sfbob  |  March 4, 2014 at 10:47 am

    And then there was something about straight guys watching more gay porn. Which I REALLY, TRULY did not understand.

  • 87. Colleen  |  March 4, 2014 at 10:57 am

    He seems to ignore exposure to any and all other forms of information about LGBT people. Just goes straight to gay porn.

  • 88. RAJ  |  March 4, 2014 at 11:01 am

    State's atty asks Price if his being #Mormon impacts his work. Of course not, he basically says. #gaymarriage
    https://twitter.com/SteveFriess

  • 89. RAJ  |  March 4, 2014 at 11:06 am

    (quick aside):

    He works at BYU. If he didn't toe the Mormon party line, he wouldn't have a job.

  • 90. palerobber  |  March 4, 2014 at 11:25 am

    "Steve Friess ‏@SteveFriess
    Of 25 papers, only 1 of his published papers, which was co-authored by 2 other people, is about same-sex marriage and children. #gaymarriage"

    that 1 paper in question was co-authored by Douglas Allen and Catherine Pakaluk. http://www.onenewsnow.com/culture/2013/01/06/the-

    Douglas Allen is an anti-gay activist, a member of NOM's Ruth Istitute, and famous for his "lesbians will menstruate at the same time" argument against lesbian parenting. http://equalitymatters.org/print/blog/20120828000

  • 91. palerobber  |  March 4, 2014 at 11:27 am

    here's a cite for the 1 paper, though i don't think it's freely available online
    Allen, Douglas; Catherine Pakaluk, and Joseph Price. “Nontraditional Families and Childhood Progress through School: A Comment on Rosenfeld” Demography, 50(3): 955-961, 2013.

  • 92. palerobber  |  March 4, 2014 at 11:29 am

    actually, the 1 paper *is* available online, thanks to Maggie Gallagher… http://www.maggiegallagher.com/wp-content/uploads

  • 93. Steve  |  March 4, 2014 at 11:31 am

    I think it wasn't gay porn specifically, but that people who watch a lot of porn are more supportive of marriage equality. Therefor porn and and sexually permissive society are bad.

  • 94. JimT  |  March 4, 2014 at 11:35 am

    I was glad to hear that the ACLU attorney read to Regnerus the statement made by UT regarding his study http://www.utexas.edu/cola/depts/sociology/news/7

    Gus Burn’s live coverage is superb! http://www.mlive.com/news/detroit/index.ssf/2014/

  • 95. Ragavendran  |  March 4, 2014 at 11:45 am

    From a commentator on mlive:
    "I hope the students pay close attention to the state's argument. And don't laugh out loud."

  • 96. bayareajohn  |  March 4, 2014 at 5:55 pm

    Cooley. Thomas M. Cooley School of Law. My alma mater. Not Cooling.

  • 97. RAJ  |  March 4, 2014 at 5:57 pm

    I know — the reporter quickly (and sheepishly) corrected himself after his error was pointed out. — His defense, he was a fairly new Michigander.

  • 98. Mike in Baltimore  |  March 4, 2014 at 9:42 pm

    He 'fucking' wrote that there was one comment, by the University.

    Maybe you should take note of the time stamps on posts, and who responded to whom?

  • 99. bayareajohn  |  March 4, 2014 at 11:06 pm

    Mike appears to be what he will be. He can't take a hint, can't recognize a friendly suggestion, and most of all can't walk away from a disagreement. Our best path is to walk around him.

  • 100. W. Kevin Vicklund  |  March 5, 2014 at 12:04 am

    He fucking gave you a damn answer, shitwad, and you not only replied to it in your own uniquely moronic way, you actually referenced his response. Lying about timestamps (oh, and note that he noticed his error before the first time you attacked him) only shows that you are a fucking coward.

    BTW, if his question should be considered "appearing to defend Regnerus" merely for pointing out a discrepancy between two statements, shouldn't you be considered to be "appearing to defend" any number of gay-bashers? After all, it seems that half of your posts consist of attacking people here over perceived semantic errors. The difference between you and MichGuy is he has the gonads to admit when made a mistake. You just double down and cry persecution when people point out your errors.

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