Another prominent Minnesota Republican has endorsed gay marriage, this one a former statewide office-holder.
Pat Anderson, former state auditor and Republican national committeewoman and current chair of the 4th Congressional District Republicans, states her support for same-sex marriage in a just-published opinion article in the St. Paul Pioneer Press.
She joins Republican Sen. Branden Petersen,who last week announced that he would co-sponsor legislation legalizing gay marriage. Such a measure is to be introduced Wednesday by DFL Sen. Scott Dibble and Rep. Karen Clark.
In an interview with MinnPost, she explained her reasons. Here's an edited transcript of the conversation:
MinnPost: You not only personally support gay marriage, but you urge other Republicans to join you. Why?
Pat Anderson: As conservatives, our goal should be to encourage marriage, encourage two-parent families. Right now we have a situation where gay couples are bringing up children without protection ,and that’s anti- family. The fact is, gay couples have children who should be brought up with two parents.
Small-government conservatives, such as myself, generally believe that government should not be dictating these sorts of issues. We need to recognize that as conservatives our goal should be to limit government.
MP: How many Republicans will be persuaded by this argument?
PA: This is part of the battle between the liberty wing of the party and the traditional conservatives. Half to a third of Republican activists support gay marriage, although the ideal position is that government has no role in marriage.
At a minimum, I know there are many Republicans and Republican legislators who feel the same as I do, but it’s a matter of sticking your neck out.
MP: Why did you stick yours out?
PA: The way the statutes are written is discriminatory based on gender and sexual orientation. We need to recognize that.