In California, State Sen. Mark Leno has written a proposed law, SB 1476, to allow a child to have multiple parents.
State Sen. Leno told the Sacramento Bee: "The bill brings California into the 21st century, recognizing that there are more than Ozzie and Harriet families today."
Under State Sen. Leno's bill, if three or more people who acted as parents could not agree on custody, visitation and child support, a judge could split those things up among them.
SB 1476 is not meant to expand the definition of who can qualify as a parent, only to eliminate the limit of two parents per child.
However, Benjamin Lopez, of Traditional Values Coalition, slammed the bill as an attempt to "revamp, redefine and muddy the waters" of family structure: "It comes as no surprise that he would try to say that a child has more than two parents, that's absurd."
State Sen. Leno's bill, which has passed the Senate and is now in the Assembly, would apply equally to men or women, and to straight or gay couples.
He claims that SB 1476 does not force judges to do anything, it only provides them with discretion to recognize multiple parents if doing so not only is beneficial, but is required for a child's well-being.