Candidates reaffirm opposition to marriage equality

WiG

The Republicans campaigning for their party’s nomination defended their opposition to marriage equality in a pre-primary debate in New Hampshire.

“We are completely disgusted by virtually the entire GOP field which panders to prejudice and bows to anti-gay bigotry,” said Truth Wins Out executive director Wayne Besen. “The unabashed extremism witnessed in this debate is a disgrace and an embarrassment to both the Republican Party and to this nation.”

Former U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum advocated an amendment to the U.S. Constitution that defined marriage as the union of a man and a woman and outlawed same-sex marriages, currently legal in D.C. and six states.

“If the Constitution says marriage is between a man and a woman, then marriage is between a man and a woman,” Santorum said. “Those who are not men and women and are married would not be married.”

Santorum, Rick Perry and Newt Gingrich alleged that legalizing civil marriage for gays and lesbians infringed on religious liberties.

Perry said the marriage equality push is “a war against religion.”

And Gingrich, who divorced twice after adulterous affairs and is in his third marriage, said he opposed marriage for gays and celebrated “the sacrament of marriage.” Gingrich, Romney and Jon Huntsman do support some form of partnership recognition for same-sex couples.

Same-sex couples can marry in New Hampshire, but there is a legislative campaign to repeal the law.