GOP's Rove: Party's Presidential Nominee May Back Gay Marriage in 2016

By:  Jack Kenny
GOP's Rove: Party's Presidential Nominee May Back Gay Marriage in 2016

Karl Rove has stated that he can imagine the Republican Party's 2016 nominee for president supporting same-sex "marriage."

Karl Rove (shown at right in photo) may have rambled off the reservation as far as some leaders of the social conservatives in the Grand Old Party are concerned. Rove, the former White House political director often described as "Bush's brain" during the administration of George W. Bush, has said that he can imagine the Republican nominee in the next presidential campaign supporting gay marriage. The Republican political strategist offered that observation in response to a hypothetical question from host George Stephanopoulos as a member of the panel on ABC's This Week Sunday. It did not take long for the comment, on which Rove did not elaborate, to elicit a sharp response from former Arkansas Governor and 2008 GOP presidential contender Mike Huckabee, a Baptist minister and prominent leader of evangelical conservatives.

"They might," Huckabee said when asked in an interview on Newsmax TV if the party might nominate a standard bearer who supports same-sex "marriage." "And if they do, they're going to lose a large part of their base because evangelicals will take a walk." Huckabee insisted it had nothing to do with bigotry against people of a different sexual orientation, an attitude frequently characterized as "homophobia."

"And it's not because there's an anti-homosexual mood, and nobody's homophobic that I know of," Huckabee said, "but many of us, and I consider myself included, base our standards not on the latest Washington Post poll, but on an objective standard, not a subjective standard."

The issue was raised on a number of the Sunday talk shows in anticipation of two cases to be argued this week in the U.S. Supreme Court. One is a challenge to the federal Defense of Marriage Act, passed by Congress and signed into law by President Bill Clinton in 1996. The law, passed in reaction to movements toward the legalization of same-sex "marriage" in some states, leaves state laws alone and defines marriage in federal law as exclusively a man-woman partnership. In states that have since broadened the legal definition of marriage to include same-sex couples, the federal law has an impact on how federal benefits, such as Social Security, and federal inheritance taxes are apportioned for surviving spouses in a same-sex "marriage." Issues of equality and the division of powers between states and the federal government are at stake.

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