Lawmaker pushes to decriminalize adultery cohabitation in Florida

A Florida lawmaker wants to do away with the second-degree misdemeanor for unmarried cohabitation, even though only 104 people have been arrested in the last 12 months for violating the state’s often forgotten law.

State Representative Ritch Workman, a Republican, recently announced that the cohabitation ban must go, as should the law against open adultery, the Tampa Tribune reports.

Workman told the news source that he does not wish to encourage or condone these activities, which could lead to divorce or other relationship issues, but believes the laws make the state look “foolish.” The law is rarely enforced, but that doesn’t make the state’s ban right, according to Workman.

“It’s not a crime – or it shouldn’t be,” the conservative explained to the publication.

The news source reports that more than 1 million people in Florida are technically committing a misdemeanor by practicing unmarried cohabitation, which is punishable by up to 60 days in jail and a $500 fine.

According to State of Our Unions, the number of cohabitating, unmarried adult couples of the opposite sex has increase from approximately 439,000 in 1960 to 6.8 million in 2008.