Today, HRC released the following statement after video emerged of Marco Rubio telling a married gay man who was sitting with his husband that he believed marriage should be between “one man and one woman.” After the voter tells Rubio that his opinion is not shared by half the country, Rubio callously tells the man he should “have the law changed by the legislature.” Memo to Marco Rubio: Not only did New Hampshire enact civil unions through the legislative process in 2007, it legalized marriage equality by the same process in 2009.
“Let’s dispense with this fiction that Marco Rubio is a moderate. He knows exactly what he’s doing when he telegraphs his desire to allow discrimination in last week’s debate, and then tells a married gay man to have the legislature vote on his Constitutional rights," said JoDee Winterhof, HRC’s Senior Vice President for Policy and Political Affairs. “Marco Rubio’s so-called ‘New American Century’ is one in which LGBT people are treated like second-class citizens, where they remain at risk for being fired or denied a job because of who they are or who they love, and where they could lose the right to get married. He’s threatened to revoke, repeal, and overturn the gains made on LGBT equality during President Obama’s two terms in office. Rubio would be a disaster for LGBT Americans, plain and simple.”
The campaign trail exchange unfolded as follows:
Man: “I’m a gay man, already married. I’m already married, have been for a long time. And you want to say that we don’t matter.”
Rubio: “No, I just believe that marriage is between one man and one woman.”
Man: “But that’s your belief. Not half of the country’s.”
Rubio: “Well I think that’s what the law should be. I think you should have the law changed by the legislature. I believe that – [cut off]”
Man: “But the law already happened.”
Rubio: “I respect your opinion.”
Man: “Yeah, yeah. Typical politician. Marco Rubio…”
Throughout his campaign, Rubio has committed to reversing nationwide marriage equality by appointing judges who would reverse the Supreme Court’s ruling and committed to the so-called “First Amendment Defense Act,” which would enable more Kim Davis-like discrimination.
Public Religion Research Institute (PRRI) has reported that a 75 percent majority of New Hampshire residents support the right of same-sex couples to marry. Nationally, polling by Greenberg Quinlan Rosner for HRC has found that a 55 percent majority of voters are less likely to support a candidate for president who opposes allowing same-sex couples to marry.