Adultery is on its way to becoming legal in Colorado.
This may seem like the latest super-liberal cause in a state where the government is run by Democrats — and which has made headlines on issues from strict gun control legislation and civil unions to early sex-ed and legalized pot — but the move by the state House to decriminalize fooling around on your spouse is less about ideology than housekeeping.
The bill would repeal a law first introduced in the 1850s, which equates adultery to promoting “sexual immorality,” a class-two misdemeanor.
Even though it’s rarely enforced, the law is important to keep as a family-values statement, according to Colorado Family Action, a conservative Christian organization.
Repealing it, the group says, is tantamount to promoting adultery.
But the details of the old law make little sense in the modern world. In addition to making adultery illegal, it also specifies that it’s a crime to rent rooms — such as at hotels — to unmarried couples.
“This is something that is archaic, it’s out of date, and it really is an extension of the power of government beyond where it has a reason to go,” Democratic Rep. Daniel Kagan, the bill’s sponsor, told FOX31. “This bill keeps the police out of our bedrooms.”
The law predates Colorado’s formation as a state, the station noted, and was originally adopted to lure women out to the Wild West frontier.
A similar bill died in the legislature last year when it was voted down by Republicans (and one Democrat) who didn’t want the stigma of having legalized adultery on their political record.
The bill passed the House judiciary committee Tuesday on an 8-3 vote.
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