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For comparing two things which have the same quantity, Which sentence is grammatically correct?

He has the same number of children as his brother does

He has the same number of children as his brother has

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  • "grammar" ! -- ELU – Kris Feb 21 '15 at 12:16
  • Excuse me, what?! – mahmood Feb 21 '15 at 12:18
  • And "children". – StoneyB on hiatus Feb 21 '15 at 12:33
  • Of the (probably rewritten) examples I'm seeing, neither is incorrect, though the variant with 'has' would, I'd say, be rarely used in the US. – Edwin Ashworth Feb 21 '15 at 14:11
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    You don't need either the word does or has. The sentence is fine just as He has the same number of children as his brother. – Catija Feb 23 '15 at 9:17
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He has the same number of children as his brother does

This is short for:

He has the same number of children as his brother does have

does have is an emphatic form of has. Omitting the have here is OK because we are repeating the verb. Explicitly repeating the verb here is a bit awkward and has a high probability of being misunderstood because it almost sounds like you are beginning a new sentence, but is probably technically grammatically OK.

I kicked the ball in the same way he did.

I ran away as fast as he did.

Emphatic forms are used to emphasize something (and also used to express verbs in negative form or interrogative mood). So ...

He has the same number of children as his brother does

is placing emphasis on his brother does [have].

If this emphasis is not warranted, then repeating the verb is not warranted either, since the context isn't really changing.

He has the same number of children as his brother has

We already know we are talking about "who has what" - so the second "has" is unnecessary.

It's like saying:

I walked to the park to see the birds at the park.

Well, obviously you would see "birds at a park" at a park. Without a strong context suggesting otherwise, the second "at the park" is just useless information.

But:

I walked to the park because I wanted to experience a really good park.

Well, the quality of the park is important in the second half of that sentence, fleshing out the context, so it makes sense to repeat it.

And another "But:"

I was walking to the park, very very drunk out of my mind - I mean really drunk - but I managed to avoid any encounters with another drunk person at the park.

This may lean towards OK - or at least not awkward - because there's a lot of information between the first mention of park and the second mention.

He has the same number of children by the same crazy wife (the one who tried to hit you that one day) that his brother has.

Same principle here - because of all the additional information, repeating the verb here actually makes things more clear. This is a pattern much more likely in speech than writing.

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