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Santorum Says Wash. Marriage Equality Law Not Last Word

by Mike Baker
Tuesday Feb 14, 2012

OLYMPIA, Wash. - Rick Santorum said Monday that Washington state's approval of gay marriage is "not the final word," as the Republican presidential hopeful rallied opponents who are exploring a referendum to block the law.

Santorum's visit to the state capital came within an hour of Gov. Chris Gregoire signing the same-sex marriage bill into law. Before meeting with political leaders in the Legislative building, he held a private meeting with religious leaders at an Olympia church.

"I encouraged them to continue the fight," Santorum said. "There are ebbs and flows in every battle, and this is not the final word."

The former Pennsylvania senator said the law waters down marriage at a time when divorce rates are already up. He argued that there are societal consequences without strong traditional marriages, including more people going to prison, more dropouts from school, higher poverty rates and higher government spending.

Still, Santorum said the debate needs to be respectful on both sides, indicating that supporters of same-sex marriage have fair points to make, too.

"There are legitimate reasons that people have to want to have to change the law, and there are legitimate reasons that people have to want to keep the law in place. If you keep it at that level, don't make it personal, make it about what is best for society, then I think we'll be fine."

He believes it should be solved at the federal level, and he wants a constitutional amendment defining marriage as between a man and a woman.

The former Pennsylvania senator is the first presidential candidate to hold a major public event in the state during the 2012 campaign. Arizona and Michigan are the next two states to hold nominating contests before Washington on March 3.

Republican Rep. Cary Condotta, a supporter of Ron Paul's campaign, said he thought Santorum's meeting with lawmakers allowed him to build a reputation in Republican circles in a state where he is otherwise unknown. In a closed-door gathering with GOP lawmakers, he answered questions about a range of issues - from health care to agriculture to poverty to schools.

"I was favorably impressed," Condotta said.

Santorum said the state's caucuses are important, as they will provide the last bit of momentum before the Super Tuesday, when 10 states vote. Washington has 43 delegates at stake, though they will not be allocated on caucus night.

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  • vbbuilt, 2012-02-14 11:22:22

    Gawd, I’m getting so tired of this repeated rhetoric " more people going to prison, more dropouts from school, higher poverty rates and higher government spending". Show us the proof; show the studies; show us the facts. Problem is, they can’t !

  • , 2012-02-14 14:13:49

    Someone needs to push this guy off a cliff. To add a little fun make the statement if he flies he’s God’s emissary but if he falls well at least he can go back into the depths of hell from which he came. See if he likes a taste of his own medicine.

  • , 2012-02-14 14:58:00

    What I dnt get is its not like my partner and I dont live a "married" life already I just dont have the paper to prove we raise our 4 kids together because letting us get married would be much worse then oh say an abusive family as long as they are straight...omg it makes me so mad lol

  • childersp, 2012-02-14 18:23:38

    Why is it that people like this want equal rights for everyone put to a popular vote. The constitution says ALL men are created equal. This is no different then when they wanted to keep the country segregated. Think of how things would be if that had been put to a vote. Everyone is entitled to believe what they want, but there is a separation of church and state for a reason.

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