The freedom to marry promises opportunity for many D.C. businesses

As rerported by Juan Pawiroredjo and William W. Cummings for American Observer:

"The debate over the freedom to marry has always focused on issues of religion, justice and morality, but voters in states that have rejected marriage equality may start rethinking their position in the years ahead because of a less lofty consideration — profit.

"Forbes magazine projects if marriage rights for same-sex couples were honored nation-wide, the ensuing weddings would generate $16.8 billion dollars in expenditures, adding significantly to America’s annual $70 billion wedding industry.

"Washington, D.C., which held its first legal marriages of same-sex couples in March, will begin raking in enormous profits from this virtually untapped market, says a study conducted by the Williams Institute, a sexual-orientation law and public-policy think tank in University of California, Los Angeles' School of Law.

"According to the study, approximately 1,882 of Washington, D.C.’s same-sex couples will marry during the next three years. Approximately another 12,550 same-sex couples will come to Washington, D.C., from other states to get married. The study goes on to say the extension of marriage to same-sex couples will boost Washington, D.C.’s economy by over $52.2 million in three years and will create 700 jobs.

"More than 1,500 applications have been filed since the District's marriage bureau began to accept marriage license applications from same-sex couples on March 3. The figure includes heterosexual couples, but the number is more than five times the average of what would normally be filed in the same time period, D.C. courts spokesperson Leah Gurowitz said."

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