“The court forgot that marriage is first and foremost about nurturing and developing children,” Romney said at [a 2005 South Carolina Republican] event. “Its ruling meant that our society is supposed to be indifferent about whether children have a mother or father.” He continued: “Today, same-sex couples are marrying under the law in Massachusetts. Some are actually having children born to them. We’ve been asked to change their birth certificates to remove the phrase ‘mother’ and ‘father’ and replace it with ‘Parent A’ and ‘Parent B.’ It’s not right on paper, it’s not right in fact. Every child deserves to have a mother and father.”
The presumptive GOP nominee said he knows there are gay couples who are in committed relationships and have the right to live together, receive domestic partnership benefits and can adopt children. But “to call that marriage is, in my view, a real departure from the meaning of that word,” Mr. Romney said. Mr. Romney is opposed to both gay marriage and civil unions but said he believes states should decide what kind of domestic partnership benefits they afford to gay couples.
On Thursday, Mr. Romney repeated his opposition to gay marriage on Fox News. But in a nod to evolving sentiment on the subject, he said he didn't oppose gay couples adopting children, and that he hoped neither side would use divisions over gay marriage to solicit funds.
In October 2006, CNN’s Wolf Blitzer asked Romney if “gays and lesbians should be able to adopt children.”
Romney answered, “Well, they are able to adopt children,” before Blitzer followed up and asked if he thinks “that’s good?” Romney answered, “And I’m not going to change that.”
Mitt Romney claimed last week that “all states but one allow gay adoption,” a statistic that came into question Monday... But according to statistics from the Human Rights Campaign, only 18 states and Washington, D.C. allow same sex couples to adopt through joint adoption, including Romney’s home state of Massachusetts, and in Colorado and Minnesoate, same-sex couples have been able to successfully petition to adopt in some jurisdictions.
[Romney] said on Thursday: "And if two people of the same gender want to live together, want to have a loving relationship, or even to adopt a child -- in my state individuals of the same sex were able to adopt children. In my view, that's something that people have a right to do. But to call that marriage is something that in my view is a departure from the real meaning of that word."
Romney spokesperson Andrea Saul emails BuzzFeed: “Gov. Romney believes a family with one mother and one father is the ideal setting to raise a child. That doesn't mean adoption by other parents — whether they be single or same-sex — should be outlawed. States have to make decisions that are in the best interests of children, and where possible that should be in a home with one mother and one father.”
This campaign cycle Romney's position is that "that gay adoption should be assessed on a state-by-state basis – not at the federal level.” But in 2006 Romney told the Boston Globe that gay couples “a legitimate interest in being able to receive adoptive services.” It's unclear if Romney personally opposes gay adoption, a position which could hurt him with evangelical voters who make up the base of the Republican Party.
"I happen to believe that the best setting for raising a child is where this is the opportunity to a mom and a dad to be in the home," Romney said. "I know there are many circumstances where that is not possible, through death or divorce. I also know many gay couples are able to adopt children. That's fine."
"Well actually I think all states but one allow gay adoption, so that's a position which has been decided by most of the state legislators, including the one in my state some time ago," Romney told Charlotte, North Carolina's WBTV on Friday. "So I simply acknowledge the fact that gay adoption is legal in all states but one."