Republicans considering bids for their party's presidential nomination in 2016 are split on same-sex marriage. In one camp, you have hardline conservatives like Mike Huckabee and Ted Cruz, who both urge massive resistance against marriage equality in the face of court rulings striking down gay marriage bans across the country. Meanwhile, Republicans like Jeb Bush and Scott Walker still oppose full civil rights for gay couples, but they concede that same-sex marriage is here to stay in their respective home states of Florida and Wisconsin. Add Florida Sen. Marco Rubio to the former camp.
In an interview with Politico on Wednesday, Rubio blasted judicial rulings against gay marriage bans, like the recent one that allowed same-sex nuptials to proceed in Florida.
“If they wanted to change that law, they should have gone to the legislature or back to the Constitution and try to change it,” Rubio told Politico. “I don’t agree we should be trying to make those changes through the courts.”
Instead, Rubio suggested, gay couples should simply hope that a majority of their state's voters or legislators back their right to marry.
“While I believe that marriage should be between one man and one woman, while people want to change that law — and a lot of people apparently do – there is a way to do that," Rubio said. "You go through the legislature, or you go on on the ballot, but I don’t agree the courts have the power to do this.”
As David Badash notes, however, courts do have the power to rule on marriage, contrary to what Rubio asserts. It was a 1967 Supreme Court ruling -- Loving v. Virginia -- that found bans on interracial marriage unconstitutional. At the time, polling showed that Americans overwhelmingly opposed interracial unions.