First, from LGBTQ Nation, Virginia Senator Mark Warner:
I support marriage equality because it is the fair and right thing to do. Like many Virginians and Americans, my views on gay marriage have evolved, and this is the inevitable extension of my efforts to promote equality and opportunity for everyone. I was proud to be the first Virginia governor to extend anti-discrimination protections to LGBT state workers. In 2010, I supported an end to the military’s ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ policy, and earlier this month I signed an amicus brief urging the repeal of DOMA. I believe we should continue working to expand equal rights and opportunities for all Americans.
Up in Alaska, another holdout has “evolved”. Senator Mark Begich now supports marriage equality, Joe.My.God reports:
“I believe that same sex couples should be able to marry and should have the same rights, privileges and responsibilities as any other married couple. Government should keep out of individuals’ personal lives–if someone wants to marry someone they love, they should be able to. Alaskans are fed up with government intrusion into our private lives, our daily business, and in the way we manage our resources and economy.”
Joe.My.God reports that West Virginia’s Senator Jay Rockefeller nor supports marriage equality too:
Like so many of my generation, my views on allowing gay couples to marry have been challenged in recent years by a new, more open generation. Churches and ministers should never have to perform marriages that violate their religious beliefs, but the government shouldn’t discriminate against people who want to marry just because of their gender. Younger people in West Virginia and even my own children have grown up in a much more equal society and they rightly push us to question old assumptions – to think deeply about what it means for all Americans to be created equal.
However, West Virginia’s other Senator, Joe Manchin, also a democrat, still refuses to support it, LGBTQ Nation reports:
U.S. Sen. Jay Rockefeller says he now opposes a federal law barring same-sex marriage. But his fellow Democrat, Sen. Joe Manchin, still supports the U.S. Defense of Marriage Act… Manchin said his faith has guided his belief that marriage is between one man and one woman.
Just who are the remaining democratic holdouts? Towleroad.com has a list:
The 11 remaining Senate Democrats who have not endorsed gay marriage publicly are: Mark Pryor (Ark.), Bob Casey (Pa.), Bill Nelson (Fl.), Jon Tester (Mt.), Tom Carper (Del.), Tim Johnson (S.D.), Joe Manchin (W.Va.), Kay Hagan (N.C.), Mary Landrieu (La.), Heidi Heitkamp (N.D.) and Joe Donnelly (Ind.).
Towleroad.com notes that some are adamantly against marriage equality, some won’t comment, and some are for gay civil rights, just not marriage.
It won’t be long before every national democratic politician feels the pressure to support full marriage equality. A turning point, indeed.