Ohio senator has change of heart on gay marriage

Republican U.S. Sen. Rob Portman said Thursday that he now supports gay marriage because one of his sons is gay.
Associated Press
Mar 15, 2013

Ohio's junior senator made the disclosure during an interview in Washington, The Cincinnati Enquirer reported.

"It's a change of heart from the position of a father," he told three reporters during a 45-minute session in his office. "I think we should be allowing gay couples the joy and stability of marriage."

He also outlined his position in an op-ed in the Columbus Dispatch.

As a member of the House in 1996, Portman voted in favor of the Defense of Marriage Act, which defines marriage as between a man and a woman and bars federal recognition of same-sex marriage.

Portman said Thursday his evolution on the subject of gay marriage began in 2011 when his son, Will, then a freshman at Yale University, told his parents he was gay. Portman said he and his wife, Jane, were very surprised but also supportive.

The Enquirer reported that Portman talked to his pastor and to people on both sides of the gay marriage issue, including Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., who is opposed to gay marriage, and former Vice President Dick Cheney, who supports it. Cheney's daughter is a lesbian.

Portman told reporters his previous views on marriage were rooted in his Methodist faith.

Portman said Thursday he would like Congress to repeal the provision of the DOMA that bans federal recognition of gay marriage, though he still supports the part of the law that says states should not be forced to recognize such marriages.

Comments

John Harville

Meow... have you checked your family closet???

deertracker

A RepubliCON......please....more like denial not realization.

KnuckleDragger

Sorta like Obama's "evolving" position on gay marriage? I know, it only counts when a Repub is against it and then changes there mind. Hypocrite much?

meowmix

Every time a Republican is confronted with humanity, they become a little bit more like a Democrat.

coasterfan

Zing!!! Well put, meow mix...

richardross

Moderators have removed this comment because it contained Off-topic comments.

John Harville

KD... Obama never was against it nor condemned homosexuals. His position as leader of the Country - and the MAJORITY that elected him, always was that human rights cannot forever be abridged.
Unlike Portman, Barack Obama NEVER campaigned against marriage equality.

John Harville

KD... which son of the President 'came out' to him?

The president gave serious thought, examined legal ramifications, read the 14th Amendment and realized DOMA infringes on states' rights, then decided the decision actually ends in the SUPCO - not unlike the Loving v United States decision about interracial marriage.

Again... which Obama son was that? Or 19-year-old daughter for that matter?

arnmcrmn

@deerturd, Where were u DUMBacrats when Obama did the exact same thing. Oh, thats right, its okay when Obie does it, but anyone else....hypocrite. Deer, one again you bring knives to a gun fight.

deertracker

Once again your brain is obviously out to lunch. I said I have no problem with his evolution just blaming it on his son. Did he use one of his kids as an excuse? NO! This is not a fight, it is a discussion.

richardross

Then why did you address Republicans?

John Harville

Portman and Cheney are - uh - Republicans.

John Harville

ammcr.... Barack Obama changed his opinion after his son 'came out' to him? Which son is that?

Ah... namecalling again, which only means you have no logical reasonable information to bring to the discussion.

deertracker

Good point meowmix! A parent usually knows or at least suspect when a son may be gay. Don't give me this "he was too busy working" crap. Seems like a hypocrite to me. He can still support his son and take a stand against gay marriage. RepubliCONS are masters at being hypocrites. I have no major problem with his "evolution" but don't act like it is because of your son! What a joke!

Bluto

I think that this kind of change of heart thing , which others in the Republican party have had on other issues , is their way of trying to reconnect with voters and come back from this far right position many in their party have taken in recent years . Back to middle ground and a return to some realistic sensibilities . And to preserve their political careers ; )

KnuckleDragger

Still can't answer the question about Obama's change of heard, ehh? Whose the hypocrite

Bluto

I never said anything about Obama's change of heart on the Gay marriage issue , but just to set your mind at ease I don't begrudge him or Portman on their coming around to a mature sensibility on this issue . Sometimes it has to hit home in a personal way in order to sink in . At this point in time though it also helps him distance himself from the wackos in the Republican party . My guess is he's planning a presidential run and wants to clear the closet and step back to the middle to appeal to more voters . Obama was no less guilty . You know the old saying " The enemy of my enemy .... "

John Harville

Obama IS less guilty! His decision was NOT based on the sexuality of ANYONE in his family AND he never campaigned against marriage equality.

Bluto

Obama wasn't pro-gay marriage to begin with . It took him listening to his child's concerns to come to a more enlightened position on this issue , but it didn't hurt him to gain the LGBT communities support.

Bluto

Oops , double post.

John Harville

WHICH OBAMA CHILD 'came out' and encouraged the 'evolution'?

coasterfan

I concur with Bluto's previous post.. The only chance Republicans have to win elections in the near future is to be more inclusive and open-minded. Must drive the tea party folks to see the moving further to the left. Hehehehe

Randy_Marsh

You know, Libertarians do not have the same problems as you party worshippers. We do not change because the political winds do.

John Harville

RAndy... Really? Libertarians don't change? Then why the heck are the Pauls running as REPUBLICANS?

In just what political wind would either of them be elected as a Libertarian? Besides, a true Libertarian would oppose DOMA because it infringes on Individual and States' rights. Right?

arnmcrmn

@deersac, what say you about Obie and his exact same "change of heart" Typical Dumbacrats.....can't even think outside of the box, let alone see over the ledge.

Really are you ...

Arrrg! Isn't it funny. Isn't it funny how members of congress are so set in their ways on Capitol Hill. They will not vote, walk out to avoid voting, or filibuster bills so they can keep their pockets full of lobbyists money. But when something in real life happens to one of their family members... Oh wait a minute, I am having second thoughts. Absolutely sickening.

Kimo

Another product of too much tanning booth.

luvblues2

Who needs to go to church when one can just come into the comments section of the SR and hear a sermon and a few amens and hallelujahs?

arnmcrmn

I thought all you liberals were all about change? So this guy changes his mind and now he's a horrible person. Wow, I hope not one of you every change the way you feel about issues as you get older.

KnuckleDragger

LOL. They are not about change, and the comments from the likes of Deerwacker prove it. Funny he now puts down Portmans reason for the change of heart as being sinister. Apparently he feels that Portmans reason, which was for the love of his son, is worse than Obamas reason which was to conjure up votes from gays. Given the two reasons, which one do you think is more genuine? Deerwacker is not the sharpest pencil in the box.

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