As scandal grips Legislature, ‘Guide to a Healthy Marriage’ bill filed in both Houses
Clay Yarborough. Image via AG Gancarski


Problems with your marriage?

Is it unhealthy?

The Florida Legislature is willing to help future couples avoid such troubles as they traipse into connubial bliss.

Days after Lakeland Republican Sen. Kelli Stargel filed SB 1580, a bill that would lead to a “guide to a healthy marriage,” a guide that would contain resources addressing “conflict management, communication skills, family expectations, financial responsibilities and management, domestic violence resources, and parenting responsibilities,” the House version was filed.

Monday saw Jacksonville Republican Rep. Clay Yarborough file the House version of the legislation (HB 1323).

The Legislature wouldn’t write this guide on its own (probably for the best given that philandering ended the careers of two Senators in recent months, with another former Senator and current State Representative going through a prolonged high-profile and messy divorce, and two more Senators copping to an in-session affair on Tuesday).

Rather, the guide would be written by the Marriage Education Committee: a panel of six marriage education and family advocates, two picked by the Governor, two by the President of the Senate, and two more by the House Speaker.

In other words, the same formula that has led to a smooth-running Constitutional Revision Commission could be brought to bear on Florida marriages.

The guide will be paid for with private funds, and reading it would be a prerequisite for a marriage license.

A.G. Gancarski

A.G. Gancarski has written for since 2014. He is based in Northeast Florida. He can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter: @AGGancarski


  • Frankie M.

    January 8, 2018 at 9:32 am

    Oooof! I feel sorry for Clay’s wife.

  • Dan Walsh

    January 8, 2018 at 10:19 am

    Talk to those of us who have the experience, knowledge, and insight of what makes a marriage work and what makes a marriage fail….

  • Donna Mace

    January 8, 2018 at 11:03 am

    Florida taxpayers ~ Is this why we send representatives to Tallahassee?

    • Susan Gould

      January 9, 2018 at 11:12 am

      I think giving the mentally ill these services we would be better served in FLA

    • Evening Iris

      January 9, 2018 at 12:11 pm

      Good question, Donna Mace. These legislators lie their way into office based on platitudes instead of issues and then spend all their time trying to exert and extend their control over working people instead of dealing with kitchen table issues like jobs, and protecting our civil rights. When are they going to return habeas corpus and extinguish Posse Comitatus? Let’s start there. We didn’t send them into government to make up rules and laws that reduce us to stockyard cattle being prodded and herded around by them. They are there to fight for our rights and best interests. And who is Rick Scott, Florida’s Governor, to try and tell anybody anything when he has a behemoth criminal history himself in the form of a 1.7 BILLION dollar embezzlement scheme/scam he ran with Sen. Bill Frist, Sr., of Tennessee, where Medicare bills were being padded illegally? The only reason he escaped prosecution is because his lawyer cut a deal with the Feds to return the money in exchange for immunity from prosecution. But he still did the crime. And how did he ever become governor twice, rigged elections? All of the legislators in Tallahassee need to be primaried out. What have they done for us? Nothing! No, instead they want to pass laws to micromanage our lives, and if I don’t miss my guess, it has a profit motive hidden in there someplace; (just like the phony “Faith Based Initiative” they tried to scam us with). We didn’t send them there for this. They need to toe the mark for us and not those scheduled to gain profits, or get voted out of office. Enough baloney is enough baloney.WE DON’T LIKE HOW YOU ARE RUNNING THINGS.

    • Pat Steck

      January 9, 2018 at 1:12 pm

      Hell no! They have many more pressing issues to deal with! If people have healthcare they can get counseling which makes this program redundant. It’s not the worst idea but not a pressing issue! Let’s stop fracking, climate change, the ruination of the EPA first!

  • Elizabeth Watson !

    January 8, 2018 at 12:30 pm

    Absolute BS! Especially when you remember that the guy at the top is a crook. A common crook. And most of those in his government are people I would not want to have dinner with. These are the folk who plan to guide ME in the way in which I live my life? Never.

  • Carol Lilly

    January 8, 2018 at 12:41 pm

    Why is premarital counseling more important than basic healthcare? Would that be because all of our elected officials already have health coverage?

  • Ken

    January 8, 2018 at 7:17 pm

    Which Florida non-profits run by #RickScottIsAnAsshole’s cronies that will be on that list? Paying huge salaries to their corporate officers and doing nothing else but ripping off the taxpayers must be justified somehow.

  • Rosemarie Jensen

    January 9, 2018 at 9:16 am

    Honestly, since when does s state legislature decide that they are qualified or justified in throwing up this hoop to get married? What a waste of taxpayer money and what a joke given the philandering that goes on up there. What a deterrent to getting married here as well.

Comments are closed.


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