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In Their Own Words: The 7 Conservative Candidates on Marriage Equality

In Their Own Words: The 7 Conservative Candidates on Marriage Equality

In Their Own Words: The 7 Conservative Candidates on Marriage Equality

What have the Conservative presidential candidates said about marriage equality?

It seems like every day, someone else is announcing their bid for president in 2016. We have a couple promising Democratic hopefuls, and a whole sea of Conservatives battling it out for the nomination. With the Supreme Court ruling on marriage equality this summer, LGBTQ protections and marriage are going to be a big topic for this election.
 
We used to be able to assume that a Conservative candidate would be starkly against marriage equality or other LGBTQ protections, but some of them have at least been making a little bit of progress. Enough, at least, that we can’t assume they are categorically against equality. So here are some of the current officially announced candidates with a quote that concisely explains their stance on the subject. 
 
Maybe they’ll surprise us… or maybe not. 
 
Ted Cruz, on being persecuted as a Christian
“If you look at other nations that have gone down the road towards gay marriage, that’s the next step of where it gets enforced. It gets enforced against Christian pastors who decline to perform gay marriages, who speak out and preach biblical truths on marriage, that has been defined elsewhere as hate speech, as inconsistent with the enlightened view of government.”
 

 
Rand Paul, on the imminence of bestiality
“I think this is the conundrum and gets back to what you were saying in the opening – whether or not churches should decide this. But it is difficult because if we have no laws on this people take it to one extension further. Does it have to be humans?”
 

 
Marco Rubio, on states’ rights
“I appreciate that many Americans' attitude towards same-sex marriage have changed in recent years. I respect the rights of states to allow same-sex marriages, even though I disagree with them. But I also expect that the decisions made by states like Florida to define marriage as between one man and one woman will also be respected.”
 

 
Ben Carson, on homosexuality being a choice
“Because a lot of people who go into prison, go into prison straight and when they come out they are gay.”
 

 
Carly Fiorina, on respecting dissenting viewpoints 
"We are having now a clarifying debate about what is really at stake here for gay couples…what's really at stake here for gay couples is how government bestows benefits. What's really at stake here for people of religious conviction is their conviction that marriage is a religious institution because only a man and a woman can create life, which is a gift that comes from God. And I think both of those points of view are valid, and I really hope that we come to a place in this country where we are prepared to have respectful differences and tolerate those two views."
 

 
Mike Huckabee, comparing homosexuality to drinking and using profanity
"People can be my friends who have lifestyles that are not necessarily my lifestyle. I don't shut people out of my circle or out of my life because they have a different point of view…I don't drink alcohol, but gosh -- a lot of my friends, maybe most of them, do. You know, I don't use profanity, but believe me, I've got a lot of friends who do. Some people really like classical music and ballet and opera -- it's not my cup of tea."
 

 
Jeb Bush, after a change of heart
"I don't think people need to be discriminated against because they don't share my belief on this, and if [gay] people love their children with all their heart and soul, that should be held up as examples for others to follow because we need it.”
 
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Stuart Mcdonald