Republican Senator Lisa Murkowski Endorses Gay Marriage

Alaskan Senator Lisa Murkowski endorsed gay marriage Wednesday, becoming the third GOP senator to do so after Ohio's Rob Portman and Illinois' Mark Kirk.

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Manuel Balce Ceneta / ASSOCIATED PRESS

Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R- Alaska on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, April 23, 2013.

Alaskan Senator Lisa Murkowski endorsed gay marriage Wednesday, becoming the third GOP senator to do so after Ohio’s Rob Portman and Illinois’ Mark Kirk.

Murkowski referenced President Reagan in her letter to Alaskans explaining her decision. “Like Reagan, Alaskans believe that government works best when it gets out of the way…I support marriage equality and support the government getting out of the way to let that happen.” Murkowski had stated earlier this year that she was “evolving” on the issue.

In 1996 the Alaska legislature became the first state to pass a law specifically banning same-sex marriages, and in 1998 about 68% of the public voted for a referendum upholding that law. Alaska determined that state and local benefits must also apply to same sex partners in 2005. According to Public Policy Polling, 67% of Alaskans support some form of legal recognition, but 51% do not endorse same-sex marriage.

After Murkowski’s announcement, Marc Solomon, national campaign director of Freedom to Marry, said, “With a solid majority of the American public supporting same-sex couples’ right to marry, along with a majority of Republican voters under 50, we’ll see more and more leaders like Senator Murkowski — from all parties and all states across the nation — moving to be in line with the electorate and on the right side of history.”

Alaska’s other Senator, Democrat Mark Begich, endorsed gay marriage last year.

 

24 comments
jake155
jake155

And yet she DOESN'T think the government works best getting out of the way of people's lives.

For instance, she voted for TARP and supports Obama's agenda.

mary.waterton
mary.waterton

Kirk, Portman and Murkowski seem to have a career death wish.

It's the economy stupid. "Gay marriage" doesn't win elections ...... it loses them.

gysgt213
gysgt213

I don't care what way people take to get here.  Just get here.  

MrObvious
MrObvious

It's easy to be for something when there's a majority of people supporting it; it's always hard to be a minority person supporting something that not only is the right thing to support, but also conform to basic humanistic principles.

wrp136
wrp136

.....how comforting that there are 3 GOP Senators who are honoring their sacred oath to uphold the US Constitution.....

forgottenlord
forgottenlord

I believe Portman when he says his position evolved on the issue and that's why he publicly supported it.  However, the second wave aren't people who evolved, they're people who either hid their true opinion and actively campaigned against something they believed in or switched their position because it was politically convenient.

mantisdragon91
mantisdragon91

@mary.waterton Then the entire GOP congress seems to have a career death wish as well. Seems they are talking about everything but the economy.

deconstructiva
deconstructiva

@mary.waterton

First mary writes "It's the economy" - which is true - then implies gay marriage is more important. So which one is more important? Decide already, please. No doubt many social conservatives value gay marriage (positively or mostly negatively) over the economy. Similar proof: how many jobs bills passed the House vs. those trying to ban abortion and ObamaRomneyCare.

tgarry01
tgarry01

In 2014 it wins elections. More and more are evolving on this issue. I have yet to hear of someone devolving on this issue.

PerryWhite1
PerryWhite1

@gysgt213 Agreed. I tried to think of something clever to say, but ... for God's sake, let's just check this box and move on. Is there anyone NOT swinging from trees who disagrees that gay people have the same rights as other Americans? No? Good. Let's give them our blessing already, and get to the reception. I need a drink.

jake155
jake155

@wrp136  

How does supporting gay marriage mean they uphold the Constitution, exactly?

jake155
jake155

@forgottenlord  

Murkowski and Kirk flip-flopping for gay marriage because they think it's safe. Ditto with Obama. Against gay marriage until changing his position a few months before an election because it's politically convenient. Hillary and Huntsman did it also.

tgarry01
tgarry01

If they didnt hide their position, they wouldn't have been elected. Today, that isn't necessarily true.

tgarry01
tgarry01

Equal protection...see Constitution. It is in there.

forgottenlord
forgottenlord

@tgarry01 

My point is that I give Portman full marks.  I don't give Murkowski anything.

tgarry01
tgarry01

The affordable care act has already slowed the rise of healthcare costs. Invading iraq and Afghanistan and out of control military spending will be the cause of bankruptcy.

tgarry01
tgarry01

When someone studies a subject, realizes that they were wrong, and comes to a new conclusion based on the facts...it is called learning. When they live in a very red state and have nothing to gain and lots to lose politically by doing the right thing. ..it is called leadership and courage.

tgarry01
tgarry01

I see your point. I still give her some credit as she is way ahead of her party.