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Utah Sen. Orrin Hatch breaks with Romney, GOP over federal ban on same-sex marriage

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

TAMPA, Fla. — Utah’s senior U.S. Senator and an influential voice in the Republican party broke ranks Tuesday with GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney and the party’s platform, differing on support for a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage.

Sen. Orrin Hatch, speaking on the convention floor to Sirius Q XM radio, said, “I’m a believer that the states should be able to make their own determination. There are about, what, six states that have done it? They’ve chosen to do that. I don’t agree with that, because I believe in the sanctity of the marriage covenant and the traditional definition, but the states have a right to do it.”

Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah)

Hatch, who is running for reelection this year, said that he felt it should be a state’s rights issue.

“Well, my personal belief is that we should not discriminate against anybody, but I do draw the line at the definition of marriage,’ he said. “I think that it’s a very important thing for men, women and children. But I don’t want to see anybody showing prejudice against anybody.”

Hatch was first elected to represent Utah in the Senate in 1977 and formerly served as Chairman of the Senate Judiciary committee.

Previously, Hatch has held traditional GOP and conservative viewpoints on issues regarding LGBT people.

In 2006, he voted in favor of an unsuccessful federal marriage amendment to define marriage as between a man and a woman. However, Hatch was an early supporter for federal AIDS funding along with Sen. Arlen Spector (R-Pa.), with whom he voted to reauthorize the Ryan White Comprehensive AIDS Resources Emergency Act in a GOP controlled Congress.

Hatch later credited the gay-led Log Cabin Federation for influencing his vote.

On Tuesday, delegates to the 2012 Republican National Convention approved a platform calling for a ban on all same-sex unions, and a constitutional amendment defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman.

Earlier this year, Romney told Christian evangelical leaders during a conference call with the Faith and Freedom Coalition, that President Barack Obama was leading an “assault on life,” an “assault on religion” and an “assault on marriage” as part of a larger “assault on American values.”

“I think (Obama) is very aggressively trying to pave the path to same-sex marriage,” said Romney. “I would, unlike this president, defend the Defense of Marriage Act. I would also propose and promote once again an amendment to the Constitution to define marriage as a relationship between a man and a woman.”

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19 more reader comments:

  1. three words to this guy- Get Over It!!!!

    Posted on Wednesday, August 29, 2012 at 8:20pm
  2. so Federally mandated bigotry is un American but not from individual states.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 29, 2012 at 8:22pm
  3. Dear Senator don’t worry for same sex marriage, just do your job and let this country back in business!

    Posted on Wednesday, August 29, 2012 at 8:25pm
  4. Love is love damnit. It shouldn’t even have anything to do with religion these days…like it or not, get the heck over it.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 29, 2012 at 8:26pm
  5. “Well, my personal belief is that we should not discriminate against anybody, but I do draw the line at the definition of marriage,’ he said. “I think that it’s a very important thing for men, women and children.”

    LMAO. Then you obviously LIED. Because you do believe we should discriminate against Homosexuals.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 29, 2012 at 8:29pm
  6. No state nor federal government shall segregate rights among it’s peoples. Are we not born equal to pursue happiness and equal treatment in the government?!

    Posted on Wednesday, August 29, 2012 at 8:29pm
  7. Good for him: a republican that remembers that it is the party of Lincoln, not Bachmann.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 29, 2012 at 8:31pm
  8. HE IS NOT JUST GONNA THROW OUR FIGHT DOWN THE DAMN DRAIN!! WE FOUGHT TO HARD FOR THOSE LAWS TO BE CHANGED!! And have CAME ALONG WAy!
    YOU CAN NOT HELP WHO THE HELL U FALL IN LOVE WITH! GUY-GUY, GIRL-GIRL DOESN’T FUCKING MATTTER!

    Posted on Wednesday, August 29, 2012 at 8:32pm
  9. I WISH PEOPLE WOULD STOP BEING SO DAMN IGNORANT, and STOP FUCKING “TRYING TO CHANGE PEOPLE”, U CAN NOT CHANGE WHO YOU ARE!!

    Posted on Wednesday, August 29, 2012 at 8:34pm
  10. the title of this says this man has some common sense

    Posted on Wednesday, August 29, 2012 at 8:38pm
  11. @Kitaro… And then you read the actual article and what he said and it’s as contradictory as you’d come to expect from these guys

    Posted on Wednesday, August 29, 2012 at 8:45pm
  12. Oh bigotry. Why can’t you move along and grow up?

    Posted on Wednesday, August 29, 2012 at 8:56pm
  13. I thought American values were : life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness…not dogma, bigotry and the pursuit of money.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 29, 2012 at 8:58pm
  14. Go, Orrin!

    Posted on Wednesday, August 29, 2012 at 9:07pm
  15. Get over it, people. He’s a Mormon. Of course he personally disapproves. On the other hand, his point is that as a Federalist he believes it is a matter for the states to decide and that neither the US Code nor the Constitution have any place in the discussion. I honor his consistency. This damn well better be the ruling from SCOTUS when they finally get the case.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 29, 2012 at 9:13pm
  16. what else would you expect from a Grammy award winning musican/politician.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 29, 2012 at 9:20pm
  17. It’s a huge deal that he publicly implied Romney/Ryan discriminate against people. A slap in the faces of the R/R duo.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 29, 2012 at 9:20pm
  18. Go Orrin!

    Posted on Wednesday, August 29, 2012 at 11:14pm
  19. The only reason he’s doing this is the fact that he knows a federal ban will never be upheld in the courts, and that once a federal ban is overturned, it pretty much will declare all state bans as unconstitutional as well. This is a clear signal that many in the GOP are starting to realize they’re losing the war against gay rights, so they’re adopting the same “states rights” stance that was used late in the civil rights movement. They’re getting desperate to declare this a federal government imposing it’s authorities over the rights of the individual states, even as they prepare to use that same federal government to take away individual states rights to decide the abortion issue.

    Posted on Thursday, August 30, 2012 at 3:22am