Cheney Offers Support For Gay Marriage

Dick Cheney rarely takes a position that places him at a more progressive tilt than President Obama. But on Monday, the former vice president did just that, saying that he supports gay marriage as long as it is deemed legal by state and not federal government.

Speaking at the National Press Club for the Gerald R. Ford Foundation journalism awards, Cheney was asked about recent rulings and legislative action in Iowa and elsewhere that allowed for gay couples to legally wed.

Sounds like some anti-prop-8 folks have been waterboarding him :slight_smile:

Gosh- Truth is stranger than fiction.

As I recall his daughter is a Lesbian.

If an arch-conservative can say this, it merely underscores the subtle change in people’s perceptions that has been proceeding for a generation. Cheney knows and loves his daughter as a human being with her own hopes, dreams, and needs.

He’s also not Catholic, so he may not be violating any of his religion’s rules on the issue.

I believe he is Christian, which would make him of the same religion with us.

Not all Christian denominations are against gay marriage. Whether we agree with that or not is another matter, but it is possible that he is not violating any of the rules of his church.

True. I was merely pointing out that it is a fallacy to say that Cheney is of a different religion from us. Catholics are Christians, although other Christians have told me to my face that I’m Catholic, not Christian!

He is Methodist.

Still, it’s interesting that a Methodist would take such an open and welcoming position with respect to gay people. Perhaps I should not be that surprised; most of the Methodists I know are warm and welcoming.

That is also my experience.

As I understand it, the main branch of the Methodist Church, the UMC, is officially against gay marriage, but I don’t know if it imposes that position on all its followers.

I don’t think we can ignore the fact that he has a gay child. I really think that a good portion of this opinion is coming from his position as a parent, and not a politician.

Yes, his daughter Mary is a lesbian.

If memory serves me correctly, President Bush and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton are Methodists too.

I know, I know. Alan Keyes and Nancy Pelosi both Catholic.

I think it is a matter of natural law; not of a particular religion’s rules.

You think that what is a matter of natural law?

What we are seeing with Cheney is emblematic of two trends on the issue. The first is that people that know gay people are almost twice as likely to support gay marriage. Actually knowing people in a group has a tendency to refute the prejudices about the group.

The second is the split between the public and private face of many politicians. I have heard for years that many Republicans would personally support gay marriage, and gay rights generally, but feel politically compelled to stay on the good side of the religious right. The candidates have to be careful what they say, but look at what people around them say and do. You see Laura Bush speak out against the Federal Marriage Amendment, John McCain’s campaign manager coming out for gay marriage, Bush’s solicitor general coming out for gay marriage, and so forth. Cheney is in a personal position that requires him to put the personal above the political. I believe that most national polticians, Rep and Dems, feel the same way, but they play the politics of the issue.

Dems are no better, they just have a different public face. They talk the rights game, but don’t do anything out of fear of backlash. Clinton talked a good game for years, but did little for gay rights when he was in office. We’ll see if Obam breaks ranks and actually does something to support equal rights for gay people, so far he is in the Clinton pattern, but its still early.

TMC, I think you’re right. I still wonder what would happen to the national debate if we changed the terms, and got the government out of the marriage business altogether. The state can’t sanctify anything anyway, so it could simply grant licenses for civil union or domestic partnership. Leave it up toe the churches, synagogues, temples and mosques to determine whom they unite in marriage or refuse to so unite. Be done with this endless wrangling about marriage rights, gay or straight!


I really think that’s the best solution. Then everyone’s rights are equal, and marriage is protected as sacred.

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