RNC Chair: Gays Deserve Dignity, Not Marriage

Reince Priebus says debate ought to be respectful, but marriage for one man, one woman

By Polly Davis Doig,  Newser Staff

Posted May 13, 2012 1:25 PM CDT

(Newser) – Gay marriage, a topic of some small amount of discussion this week, ruled the talk shows today, with RNC Chair Reince Priebus tackling the subject head-on: "People in this country, no matter straight or gay, deserve dignity and respect. However, that doesn't mean it carries on to marriage," he told Meet the Press. But, he added, "I don't think it's a matter of civil rights. Marriage has to have a definition. And we just happen to believe it’s between a man and a woman." Priebus' call for respect came after Rand Paul publicly joked last week that President Obama's stance on marriage "couldn't get any gayer." Family Research Council president Tony Perkins decried the joke, saying, "I don't think it's a laughing matter. I think we should be civil, respectful." Elsewhere on your Sunday dial, as per Politico:

  • Deval Patrick on Mitt Romney and gay rights: Romney has "occupied many positions on many issues." Alluding to comments Romney made in 1994 that he would be "better" than Ted Kennedy on gay rights, Patrick said his predecessor "takes a different position in front of a different audience today."
  • Barney Frank on not moving the dial: "I don't think anybody's vote was changed. I expected the president to be supporting same-sex marriage because, frankly, of the absence of any good reason against it once you believe that people ought to be treated fairly."
  • JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon on his politics: “I would call myself a ‘barely Democrat.' I didn't support anyone last time around: I'm on the New York Fed Board; I'm not allowed to. But I am a Democrat, yes. ... I've gotten disturbed at some of the Democrats anti-business behavior ... (but) I want jobs. I want a more equitable society. I don't mind paying higher taxes. I do think we're our brother's keeper."
  • Frank on JPMorgan's mess: “The Volcker Rule is still being formulated," but "I hope that the final rule will prevent this."
  • John Thune on the GOP veepstakes: "I don't think you ever rule out opportunities when you're in public life and you say you want to make a difference and you're serious about that, obviously, then you don't foreclose options. But I have a job to do in the United States Senate, I like what I'm doing, I think I can make a difference there. I think working with a Republican president, we can do some really good things for this country."

RNC Chair Reince Priebus speaks during the 2011 Republican Leadership Conference on June 18, 2011 in New Orleans.
RNC Chair Reince Priebus speaks during the 2011 Republican Leadership Conference on June 18, 2011 in New Orleans.   (Getty Images)
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