Rick Santorum and Mitt Romney on Sunday
said they support gay rights.
The GOP presidential candidates made
their remarks during an NBC News-Facebook debate broadcast from
Concord, New Hampshire on Meet the Press.
Moderator Andy Hiller reminded Romney
that he had said in 1994 that “the gay community needs more support
from the Republican Party and I would be a voice in the Republican
Party to foster anti-discrimination efforts,” then asked: “How
have you stood up for gay rights and when have you used your voice to
influence Republicans on this issue?”
“I made it very clear we should not
discriminate in hiring policies, in legal policies,” Romney
answered. “At the same time from the very beginning in 1994, I
said to the gay community: I do not favor same-sex marriage. I
oppose same-sex marriage and that has been my view.”
“When is the last time you stood up
and spoke out for increasing gay rights?” Hiller asked.
“Right now,” Romney answered.
Santorum said he also does not believe
in discrimination based on sexual orientation, then added: “That
does not mean I would agree with certain things that the gay
community would like to do to change laws with respect to marriage,
respect to adoption and things like that.”
In a follow up question, Santorum was
asked what he would do if one of his sons announced to him that he
“I would love him as much as I did
the second before he said it. And I would try to do everything I can
to be as good a father to him as possible.” (The video is embedded
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Romney, Newt Gingrich blast gay marriage at New Hampshire GOP