GOP senator changes his view on gay marriage

Republican Sen. Rob Portman of Ohio has reversed his longtime opposition to same-sex marriage after reconsidering the issue because his 21-year-old son, Will, is gay.

Portman, 57, said his son, a junior at Yale University, told his wife, Jane, and him that he’s gay, and “it was not a choice, it was who he is and that he had been that way since he could remember.”

Rob Portman, the first GOP senator to support gay marriage, said, “It allowed me to think of this issue from a new perspective, and that’s of a Dad who loves his son a lot and wants him to have the same opportunities that his brother and sister would have.”

The conversation the Portmans had with their son two years ago led him to consult clergy members, friends—including former vice president Dick Cheney, whose daughter is gay—and the Bible.

“The overriding message of love and compassion that I take from the Bible, and certainly the Golden Rule, and the fact that I believe we are all created by our maker—that has all influenced me in terms of my change on this issue,” Portman said, adding that he feels that “in a way, this strengthens the institution of marriage.” —RNS