High-ranking lesbian official in Pa. denounces Corbett comment on same-sex marriage

    Pennsylvania’s top-ranking openly gay official denounced Gov. Tom Corbett’s recent remarks on same-sex marriage.

    Terry Mutchler, head of the Office of Open Records, is the latest openly gay Pennsylvania official — and the highest-ranking one — to express her disappointment with Corbett’s recent comments on gay marriage.

    Mutchler ended a speech on government transparency to a group of state archivists and historians Monday by addressing Corbett’s comparison of gay marriage to marriage between a brother and sister.

    The instantly viral gaffe last week from Corbett was followed with an apology and explanation that he was only listing another category of people barred from marrying under state law.

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    But Mutchler, a lawyer herself, said the explanation doesn’t ring true, or even seem relevant.

    “The point of the argument of gay marriage is not what the law delineates at the moment. Those are very good public policy things… siblings cannot and should not get married,” she said. “However, there’s such a disconnect between the consenting activity of an adult.”

    Comparing gay marriage to children or siblings misses the point, Mutchler said.

    “I find it sad that a governor with a team of intelligent, thoughtful, and brilliant staff around him, some of whom are gay, has such a basic, fundamental misunderstanding and quite frankly an overt meanness on any issue, but let alone a human rights issue,” she said.

    In a television interview recorded last week, Corbett distanced himself from an analogy his lawyers made comparing gay marriage to children marrying, and said a better example was marriage between a brother and sister.

    He issued an apology Friday, saying he didn’t mean to offend people, and was only trying to illustrate what categories of people are barred from marrying under state law.

    Mutchler, who was appointed to a six-year term by former Gov. Ed Rendell, called Corbett’s apology half-hearted.

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