GOP Is Split Over Gay Marriage

The gay marriage debate is starting to cause a divide between potential GOP 2016 presidential candidates. On the one end are those who want to admit defeat and at the other end are those who wish to keep fighting. This, despite the fact that 36 states in America have already legalized gay marriage, meaning 72 percent of America's population live in an area where gay marriage is legal.

When Republican voters were polled in early caucus and primary states, a narrow majority said that it was unacceptable for candidates to oppose gay marriage. Some GOP analysts worry that a consistent gay marriage debate can threaten any nominees if they are unable to attract younger voters. Rick Wilson, a Florida-based Republican consultant says, “This was a battle in the culture war that has been lost, and there’s no turning this clock back. You’re not going to un-ring this bell.’’ As a result, many Republican White House candidates will face a tough position of pandering to the party's conservative Christian base while trying to attract a broader and more moderate electorate.

Although none of the potential candidates have come out in favor of same-sex unions, Florida governor Jeb Bush, Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker, and Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky have lightened up their rhetoric around the issue. On the other hand, former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee says, “It’s like asking someone who’s Jewish to start serving bacon-wrapped shrimp in their deli. We don’t want to do that — I mean, we’re not going to do that.” Senator Ted Cruz of Texas is also pushing for a constitutional amendment to leave it up to the states to define marriage, thereby preventing the federal government from getting involved. Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal, former US senator Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania, and former Texas governor Rick Perry are the most vocal regarding their opposition to gay marriage. All the while, socially conservative leaders in Iowa plan to pressure each and every Republican candidate into opposing gay marriage.

Photo: Illinois Family

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