I wrote a couple of days ago about the CNN interview with possible Republican presidential candidate Fred Thompson in which he expressed support for amendments to the U.S. Constitution to ban same-sex marriage and abortion rights, which you can read here. Now Fred's non-campaign has issued a "clarification."
In an interview with CNN today, former Senator Fred Thompson’s position on constitutional amendments concerning gay marriage was unclear.
Thompson believes that states should be able to adopt their own laws on marriage consistent with the views of their citizens.
He does not believe that one state should be able to impose its marriage laws on other states, or that activist judges should construe the Constitution to require that.
If necessary, he would support a constitutional amendment prohibiting states from imposing their laws on marriage on other states.
Fred Thompson does not support a constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage.
In other words, Fred is backtracking so that he does not appear as really, really anti-gay, just as a supporter of states' rights. I wonder if Fred would have also used the states' rights argument during the Black civil rights movement as justification for supporting separate schools for Black and white students. As it is now, he is advocating that same-sex and opposite-sex couples be treated differently under the law.
He does hold out the possibility of of supporting a federal constitutional amendment if the U.S. Supreme Court were to overturn what many consider to be the unconstitutional Defense of Marriage Act although Fred spins it as supporting an amendment "prohibiting states from imposing their laws on marriage on other states." In any event, it boils down to Fred wanting to protect the special right to marriage that opposite-sex couples have in 49 states including the multiple marriages that he, Rudy Giuliani, John McCain and Newt Gingrich have all had.