A former aide to Minnesota Governor Tim
Pawlenty, a Republican, on Wednesday urged GOP support for a proposed
gay marriage bill in Minnesota.
Brian McClung served as deputy chief of
staff to Pawlenty, who served two terms as governor.
McClung argued his case in an op-ed
titled Minnesota GOP Should Back Same-Sex Marriage published
in the Star
“Supporting same-sex marriage is both
the right thing to do and a political imperative for our party,”
McClung wrote. “Recent polling shows Republicans are viewed as out
of touch, stodgy and opposed to change. Unfortunately, that's
because it's been too often true as of late.”
“[A] staggering 80 percent of young
Americans believe same-sex couples deserve the freedom to marry.”
“If Republicans don't engage these
young people on our core issues of less government, more freedom,
greater personal responsibility, more opportunity and true
entrepreneurship, we run the risk of losing their support for
decades,” he added.
McClung's endorsement runs counter to
the opinion of this former boss.
During a brief stint as a candidate for
the 2012 Republican presidential nomination, Pawlenty stated that
marriage equality is a “bad idea” and endorsed a federal
constitutional amendment banning such unions.
“We have courts who have demonstrated
they think they know better than the people on our statutes. And
they feel that they should insert their personal or political views
into these matters. And the only way to limit court excesses in that
regard is to put it in our statutes and our Constitution,” Pawlenty
said at the time.
The proposed marriage legislation has
cleared House and Senate committees and awaits floor votes in both