(CNN) – Florida Gov. Charlie Crist appeared to backtrack from statements he made regarding same-sex marriage during a CNN interview Sunday, saying in a statement that he does not support a Constitutional ban on the practice.
The comments appear at odds with what the Florida Senate candidate told CNN’s Ed Henry on State of the Union, during which he expressed continued support for a ban on same-sex marriage.
“I feel the same way, yes, because I feel that marriage is a sacred institution, if you will. But I do believe in tolerance. I’m a live and let live kind of guy, and while I feel that way about marriage, I think if partners want to have the opportunity to live together, I don’t have a problem with that,” said Crist when asked about his stance against same-sex marriage when he ran for governor four years ago.
“When it comes to marriage, I think it is a sacred institution. I believe it is between a man and woman, but partners living together, I don’t have a problem with,” added Crist, the former Republican-turned-Independent who is leading the three-way Senate race in most recent polls and is counting on significant support from Democratic and independent voters to eek out a victory.
In a statement released later Sunday, Crist said he in fact is against a Constitutional ban on same sex marriage and was instead only offering his support for a state ban on the practice.