Two Pro-Fatherhood Legislators Win

Sacramento, CA–I’m a little late with this, I know, but two important pro-fatherhood legislators won Tuesday–former California Assemblyman Rod Wright (pictured) and Texas legislator Allen Vaught. I recently became acquainted with Vaught via Texas activist Dave Cary, who wrote:

Vaught has been a tireless supporter of Parental Rights and the Constitution. He believes that Parental Rights, even in the event of a divorce, should not be modified except by agreement of both parents in an equal playing field, or the establishment of the unfitness of a parent through due process of law…

Allen is well respected in the Texas house and a member of the House Juvenile Justice and Family Interest Committee, the committee to issue bills concerning Parental Rights. He is also Vice-Chair of the House Jurisprudence Committee. He is an Iraqi war veteran (captain in the cavalry). He has agreed to sponsor and actively support a bill protecting Parental Rights in the event of a divorce during the 81st Session and has already contributed concretely to this end.

Interesting, Vaught was recently described by the Dallas Voice, a gay newspaper, as a “gay-friendly Democratic candidate endorsed by the Human Rights Campaign,” a pro-gay marriage group. I know that some of my readers don’t share my views on gay marriage (I’ve no problem with gay marriage and voted against the anti-gay marriage Proposition 8 in California last week). Looking at the larger picture, we need allies on both sides of the aisle, and Vaught is a good one. Vaught’s website is

Wright is one of the unsung heroes of the struggle for fairness in family law. In my blog post Important: Accomplished, Pro-Fatherhood Candidate Needs Your Support, I wrote:

Rod was a pioneer of child support and family law reform in California and the nation. In  speaking about his time introducing reforms into a hostile California legislature, Rod describes himself and his staff as, “The first guys who hit the beach at Normandy–taking all the hits.” It was absolutely true.

Rod was one of the pioneers of paternity fraud laws, and in 2002 got AB 2240 through the California legislature. It was subsequently vetoed by then-Governor Gray Davis (see my co-authored column Preserving Paternity Fraud, Orange County Register, 10/3/02), but it helped pave the way for the eventual passage of AB 252 in 2004.

Sacramento veteran Stan Diorio served as Wright’s Chief of Staff from 1996 to 2002 and has been pivotal in many of the achievements in family law in California.  To read a brief history he wrote about Rod Wright’s contributions, click here.

Rod will now be heading to the California Senate.

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