Gay-Marriage Conservatives

(FILES) File photo dated March 31, 2012 shows the US Supreme Court Building in Washington, DC. The US Supreme Court opened a new term October 6, 2014y rejecting calls for a nationwide ruling on same-sex marriage. AFP PHOTO/Karen BLEIER/FILESKAREN BLEIER/AFP/Getty ImagesThe brief’s signatories include former Republican National Committee chairman Ken Mehlman, conservative pundits S.E. Cupp and Alex Castellanos, former White House chief of staff Ken Duberstein, former Mitt Romney senior advisers Beth Myers and Carl Forti, conservative economists Doug Holtz-Eakin (formerly director of the Congressional Budget Office) and Greg Mankiw (formerly on the Council of Economic Advisers), former senator Alan Simpson (R-Wyo.), former homeland security adviser Fran Townsend and former Massachusetts state Senate minority leader Richard Tisei. The presence of an esteemed general suggests that there is no segment of society in which gay marriage is not gaining acceptance. There are on the list centrist Republicans, more libertarian figures and even social conservatives. In a phone interview Mehlman said, “I think the diversity of the people is a reflection of what we have seen which is increased support in every demographic [for gay marriage].”

In the brief, the signatories argue that they “have concluded that marriage is strengthened, and its value to society and to individual families and couples is promoted, by providing access to civil marriage for all American couples—heterosexual or gay or lesbian alike. In particular, civil marriage provides stability for the children of same-sex couples, the value of which cannot be overestimated. In light of these conclusions, amici believe that the Fourteenth Amendment prohibits States from denying same-sex couples the legal rights and responsibilities that flow from the institution of civil marriage.” They argue that their belief in judicial restraint nevertheless is informed by their understanding that our “constitutional tradition empowers and requires the judiciary to protect our most cherished liberties against overreaching by the government, including overreach through an act of legislature or electorate. That principle, no less than our commitment to democratic self-government, is necessary to individual freedom and limited government.”

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