In an interview, the United States House Speaker John Boehner has said that he “can’t imagine” he would “ever” change from his current stance in opposition to equal marriage.
Speaking in the interview with ABC News, Boehner is asked whether he, as in the case of Ohio Senator Rob Portman, who yesterday changed his stance on equal marriage, after finding out that his son was gay, would change his mind if one of his children, or a child of a close friend came out.
Republican Senator, Portman, who was among the original sponsors of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) yesterday announced that he had changed his anti-equal marriage stance, following the personal revelation of his own son’s coming out as gay.
Boehner responded to speak warmly of Portman, but said that he could not imagine ever supporting equal marriage.
He said: “Rob’s a great friend and a long-time ally. And I appreciate that he’s decided to change his views on this,” Boehner said. “I believe that marriage is the union of one man and one woman. … It’s what I grew up with. It’s what I believe. It’s what my church teaches me. And I can’t imagine that position would ever change.”
In 1996 Portman was one of the co-sponsors of DOMA, which federally defined marriage as being between a man and a woman.
Already, Portman has drawn criticism from religious groups who previously supported him, as Phil Burress of the Ohio group Citizens for Community Values, spoke out to say that he thought Portman was “a very troubled man”, and suggested that he was “distraught” over his son coming out.