The dwindling, Great Depression-era economy has forced the state of Maine to be Practical Polly's about this whole gay marriage fiasco.
The degradation of morality and the end of family values as we know it (or whatever they say) is no match for the expected $60 million a cascade of same-sex I Do's could generate in three years.
So where exactly is this $60 million coming from? Good question. Glad you asked. And the answer is truly everywhere. From wedding rings, to wedding attire, to parties, hotel bookings, honeymoon tickets and vacation clothes. Name it, the gays and lesbians would surely do it. (And as our gay friends remind us on almost daily basis: better than us)
According the latest U.S. Census Bureau's American Community Survey for Maine, there are 4, 644 gay couples in the state, however, as the article states, this is likely an underestimate. There are 52, 801 reported gay and lesbian individuals overall.
Regardless, even if the couples had no desire for a ceremony, party or vacation, at the very least they would need marriage certificates. From marriage certificates alone, the state thinks they could generate $539, 193 just from their own citizens.
The Williams Institute also estimates the state could create 1, 000 new jobs. Especially if the state became a same sex marriage haven like, say, Massachusetts, which would boost tourism without even trying.
"Massachusetts had more than 9,000 couples marry in the first three years of including same-sex couples in the state's civil marriage laws," says Lee Swislow, Executive Director of Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders. "Not only do we have a lot of happy families who feel more secure because they are able to legally marry, we also have a flourishing wedding industry that brings money to businesses throughout the state."