No. 51: Florida Sen. Nelson Backs Gay Marriage
Democrat's reversal means a majority in Senate now supports it
By John Johnson, Newser Staff
Posted Apr 4, 2013 5:57 PM CDT
Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Fla., arrives at his reelection party in Orlando on Nov. 6, 2012.   (AP Photo/John Raoux)

(Newser) – It's not a huge surprise, but Florida Democrat Bill Nelson has reversed position to declare his support for gay marriage, reports the Tampa Bay Times. "If we are endowed by our Creator with rights, then why shouldn't those be attainable by gays and lesbians?" he wrote in his statement to the paper. Nelson joins a growing list of senators to reverse course on same-sex marriage, but Roll Call notes that his switch his noteworthy because it makes him the 51st senator to do so. That gives proponents a majority in the chamber, although they've got work to do if they want a filibuster-proof 60.

Nelson's decision means only six Senate Democrats remain opposed to gay marriage: Joe Donnelly (Indiana), Heidi Heitkamp (North Dakota), Tim Johnson (South Dakota), Mary Landrieu (Louisiana), Joe Manchin (West Virginia), and Mark Pryor (Arkansas). So far, only Rob Portman and Mark Kirk have switched among Republican senators. And remember, this isn't "flip-flopping," it's "evolving."

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Showing 3 of 35 comments
dann0
Apr 5, 2013 11:45 AM CDT
A civil marriage and a religious marriage should be completely separate issues. If that were the case, it would get the churches out of the issue. Nobody is suggesting that a law would force a church to perform, accept, or even acknowledge a gay marriage. This issue should be no different from Catholic and Baptist weddings; both are married in they eyes of the law but Catholics are allowed to not recognize that marriage in the eyes of their god/Church.
Nocturno
Apr 5, 2013 3:51 AM CDT
That's wonderful! All those so called religious people that implement religious behavior where they want and when they want may be sure now that we finally start fallowing God's rule which is have respect of each other and love each other for who we are. God in who they allegedly believe so.
cornelison
Apr 4, 2013 11:50 PM CDT
Now ask him if he's going to raise taxes only on the parents of college kids in Florida. N. Carolina is doing it.