In a reversal of his long-standing opposition to the policy, Senator Rob Portman has announced his support for gay marriage. The Ohio Republican said his change of heart was driven by his 21-year-old son’s revelation that he is gay.
“I’ve come to the conclusion that for me, personally, I think this is something that we should allow people to do, to get married, and to have the joy and stability of marriage that I’ve had for over 26 years. That I want all of my children to have, including our son, who is gay,” Portman told CNN’s Dana Bash.
Portman’s son Will is a junior at Yale University. His reaction to his son’s revelation, Portman said, was “Love, support.”
In an op-ed in the The Columbus Dispatch, however, Portman indicates that he is opposed to judicial intervention when it comes to same-sex marriage:
The process of citizens persuading fellow citizens is how consensus is built and enduring change is forged. That’s why I believe change should come about through the democratic process in the states. Judicial intervention from Washington would circumvent that process as it’s moving in the direction of recognizing marriage for same-sex couples. An expansive court ruling would run the risk of deepening divisions rather than resolving them.
He concludes, “Like millions of Americans in recent years, I’ve changed my mind on the question of marriage for same-sex couples. As we strive as a nation to form a more perfect union, I believe all of our sons and daughters ought to have the same opportunity to experience the joy and stability of marriage.”