A politician has opposed his own daughter’s right to marry the woman she loves.

Maryland Republican Richard J Douglas is currently running for the US Senate – though the state has not elected a Republican to the Senate in over 30 years.

Speaking in a TV debate this week, Douglas insisted he is still opposed to equal marriage even though his own daughter is gay.

He said: “I have a lesbian daughter. I love my daughter, I want no harm to come to her, but our traditions matter and tolerance is a two-way street.”

Asked what he felt about the Supreme Court ruling, he said: “I didn’t celebrate it – I didn’t agree with the result, I didn’t like it.”

One of his rivals for the party’s nomination, openly gay candidate Chrysovalantis Kefalas, struck a more conciliatory tone on the issue.

He said same-sex marriage “is an issue of individual liberty, equality and dignity” – and is not valued by voters.

Rival Kathy Szeliga added: “This was a divisive issue in the past, but it’s definitely been settled. What Marylanders care about now are taxes, jobs and the economy.”

Larry Jacobs of Equality Maryland told the Washington Blade: “I feel for his daughter.

“While I agree that traditions matter, it is sad that he puts them ahead of the needs of his own family.

“If he were my father, I would disown him. So should the voters of Maryland.”

The state’s Republican governor Larry Hogan last year attempted to overturn LGBT anti-discrimination protections put in place by his predecessor.

He said: “We didn’t like the fact that [former Governor O’Malley] was trying to push these things through at the last minute.”

However, he faced opposition from the Democrat-controlled legislature.