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

coasterfan

We Dems don't have a problem with him changing. The reason he is getting skewered is because he was one of THE most outspoken anti-gay politicians in Washington, AND very condescending of people who believe the exact same thing that he supposedly now supports. That is very different from someone who was quiet about the subject, and later came out in support of gay marriage. You know, like Obama for example.

To compare how these two gentlemen handled the situation is silly, because they could not possibly have handled it more differently from one another.

Randy_Marsh

Of course you do not have a problem, If Obama changed tomarrow you would be fine and follow his lead.

arnmcrmn

And why did Obama change his mind? Votes..plain and simple.

deertracker

Coaster is spot on!!!!!!!!

arnmcrmn

@can'tkilladeer.......did you post this before or after suckling all the colostrum out of coasters left boob?

John Harville

AMMwhatever... which 'liberal' on here called him a horrible person? All I hear people saying is that he was adamantly against marriage equality until it came out of his own closet... and that it took him two years to 'come out' to us. Why would 'liberals' be opposed to a Republican senator openly supporting marriage equality?
If liberals didn't tolerate hypocrits there'd be no one on here for you to attack.

richardross

We need to fire every person in Washington and start over.

looking around

I bet if you told these Republican representatives that they also would have to rely on S.S. benefits and Medicare that they would have a change of heart and view points also.....just say'n

coasterfan

Exactly. They all hate funding FEMA until the tornado hits their house. If you think of the common good, you are Democrat. If you think of only yourself and your family, and have the attitude that everyone else is "on their own", you are Republican. Those are stereotypes, of course, but they became stereotypes because they ARE common viewpoints to both groups, don't you think?

arnmcrmn

Hate funding FEMA? Proof? Didn't they pass a 50 billion bill for aid for Sandy? Yes, I think so.
Medicare....SS.....2 of the 3 largest spending items in this nation. I didn't realize that I went to school to pay for someone else's lack of wanting to go to school.

Republicans........are way more driven, and take much more responsibility for themselves.
Dems.....want handouts, dont want to work much harder than the minimum and want to blame everyone else.

John Harville

$50 billion - after cutting it to $9 billion until they could pork it up. Do you ever listen to anyone but Faux? Why do you think Christie wasn't invited to CPAC after the way he went off on the Republicans?

deertracker

RepubliCONS believe they are the only ones "entitled" to government assistance of any kind!

arnmcrmn

Most Republicans dont have to rely on government assistance....you know because we WORK!!!!!

John Harville

You are such an asp. The majority of states receiving Federal aid are BRIGHT R E D. Study the facts, man.

Or are you just enjoying life there in Ignorant Bliss, Ohio?

mikel

political pressure, plain and simple!

mikel

so, rob, let's say you are against prostitution. you then find out your child is a prostitute. do you now accept it?????

Not Yer Pa

Apples and bowling balls. One is a crime the other isn't.

John Harville

AMEN!

John Harville

Mikel... so now YOU are comparing Marriage Equality to Prostitution?

I

Portman's views of gay marriage "evolved" when he found out his son is gay. Barack Obama's views of gay marriage "evolved" when he realized he needed that segment of the population's vote to get re-elected. Which is worse?

coasterfan

Nope. I think it's probably a safe guess that 90% of gays were already voting for Obama. Let's face it, the GOP is so anti-gay that it didn't really matter what Obama said on the subject. Which is why a lot of editorials written on his support of gay marriage said that he had little to gain by it, and much more to lose.

The fact that Obama came out in support of gay marriage at the most crucial time in the campaign - and STILL won - should have been a wake-up call for the GOP. But it wasn't, was it? Instead of trying to become more inclusive, they have spent the past several months insulting the very people they need to attract. Hint: telling people that they are stupid because they voted for Obama is a stunningly bad way to attract new voters. It's almost as bad as electing people like Todd Akin and Richard Mourdock.

I

Obama had much more to lose by suddenly supporting gay marriage? Like what, the black vote? There was no chance of that happening. As for calling people stupid for voting for Obama, I'm sure there are many out there that are proud that they once voted for Jimmy Carter.

deertracker

It's not like white candidates have not received the "black vote".

John Harville

EYE... I'm immensely glad I voted for Jimmy Carter - one of the great humanitarians who said 37 years ago we needed to vastly diminish our reliance on foreign oil.

I

John HarHar, even a blind nut finds a squirrel, eventually. And I'm not surprised that you voted for Carter, probably twice.

Brainiac2007

Keep supporting Gay marriage! That's whats wrong with this country! Everyone is going against Gods word. Id hate to be the one answering for those actions!

John Harville

Oh Brainiac. Don't worry, you'll be too busy answering to God for failing to follow the New Testament commandments - you know, the ones about loving one another and loving as Jesus loved?

Besides, what makes you think you have any chance at Heaven?

coasterfan

On one hand, it's good to see a leading Republican breaking ranks, and doing the right thing, for a change. On the other hand, he's still a typical Republican in that he didn't support it until it became personal.

To put it in the proper perspective, he is no better than a white, southern bigot from the 1960's who was an outspoken racist - until one morning, when he woke up to find that his son was now Black. It's hard to respect such a person, both before AND after they publicly changed their stance, you know?

And the fact is, Portman's son came out TWO YEARS ago. If I were the son, It must have been extremely disappointing to hear Dad railing against gays for the past 2 years.

deertracker

Hmmmmmm......Strom Thurmon ring a bell!?

KURTje

Love it! Goldwater the same. Chaney the same. Now Portman...figures. Weak people like him flip flop. Log Cabin Republican..

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