Major GOP Senator Changes Mind on Gay Marriage

Rob Portman reveals he has a gay son

By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff

Posted Mar 15, 2013 7:02 AM CDT | Updated Mar 15, 2013 7:47 AM CDT

(Newser) – You might remember Sen. Rob Portman as a top Mitt Romney surrogate and VP shortlist candidate—we deemed him "dull as dirt." Well, today he's doing something decidedly not dull: He's announcing an about-face on his longstanding opposition to gay marriage. In an interview with CNN, the Ohio conservative reveals that his 21-year-old son, Will, is gay, and that discovering that fact two years ago caused him to rethink his position.

Portman says everyone should be able to "to have the joy and stability of marriage that I've had for 26 years. That I want all my children to have, including our son." While Portman has mostly kept his son's orientation secret on the Hill, it came out when Romney's team vetted him as a possible running mate. "I told Mitt Romney everything. That process is, intrusive, would be one way to put it," he says. Romney's team told him that it was not a deal-breaker. Portman also sought counsel from Dick Cheney, who has experience with the dilemma. Cheney's advice: "Follow your heart."

In this Feb. 15, 2011 file photo, Rob Portman, speaks on Capitol Hill.
In this Feb. 15, 2011 file photo, Rob Portman, speaks on Capitol Hill.   (AP Photo/Alex Brandon, File)
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Rob Portman announces his support for gay marriage.   (CNN)

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