Republican Presidential Candidates Blast Gay Marriage Ruling, But Differ On What To Do Now

Alex Pappas | Political Reporter

The Republicans running for the White House blasted the Supreme Court’s ruling released Friday that will allow gay couples in all 50 states to get married, expressing concerns about the “religious liberty” of Christians who support traditional marriage but differing over how to proceed.

The statements from these candidates show an apparent divide forming between those who think Republicans should find ways to keep fighting gay marriage and those who say it should now be accepted as the law of the land.

“I believe this Supreme Court decision is a grave mistake,” said Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, who is preparing for a presidential run. “As a result of this decision, the only alternative left for the American people is to support an amendment to the U.S. Constitution to reaffirm the ability of the states to continue to define marriage.”

“This decision will pave the way for an all out assault against the religious freedom rights of Christians who disagree with this decision,” Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal said. “This ruling must not be used as pretext by Washington to erode our right to religious liberty.”

“Guided by my faith, I believe in traditional marriage…It is now crucial that as a country we protect religious freedom and the right of conscience and also not discriminate,” former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush said.

“The Supreme Court has spoken with a very divided voice on something only the supreme being can do-redefine marriage,” Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee said. “I will not acquiesce to an imperial court any more than our founders acquiesced to an imperial British monarch. We must resist and reject judicial tyranny, not retreat.”

“Today, five unelected justices decided to redefine the foundational unit that binds together our society without public debate or input,” said Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum. “The stakes are too high and the issue too important to simply cede the will of the people to five unaccountable justices.”

“While I strongly disagree with the Supreme Court’s decision, their ruling is now the law of the land,” said Ben Carson, who prefers civil unions for gay couples. “I call on Congress to make sure deeply held religious views are respected and protected. The government must never force Christians to violate their religious beliefs.”

“Moving forward…all of our effort should be focused on protecting the religious liberties and freedom of conscience for those Americans that profoundly disagree with today’s decision,” Carly Fiorina said.

“I am a proud defender of traditional marriage and believe the people of each state should have the right to determine their marriage laws. However, the Supreme Court has ruled that state bans on gay marriage are unconstitutional, and I will respect the court’s decision,” South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham said.

“While I disagree with this decision, we live in a republic and must abide by the law,” Florida Sen. Marco Rubio said. “As we look ahead, it must be a priority of the next president to nominate judges and justices committed to applying the Constitution as written and originally understood.”

“I fundamentally disagree with the court rewriting the law and assaulting the 10th Amendment,” former Texas Gov. Rick Perry said. “Our founding fathers did not intend for the judicial branch to legislate from the bench, and as president, I would appoint strict Constitutional conservatives who will apply the law as written.”

“I’m obviously disappointed because I’ve always felt that marriage is one of these traditions between a man and woman,” Ohio Gov. John Kasich said. “But the court has spoken. And I’ve said all long that when the court makes a decision, we abide by the law of the land. And they made their determination and we just move on.”

“Our job is going to be to support the law of the land and [gay marriage], under the Supreme Court ruling, is now the law of the land,” New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie said at a press conference. “But I don’t agree with the way its been done.”

The Supreme court’s 5-4 ruling strikes down laws in 14 states banning gay marriage.

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