Former RNC head Ken Mehlman has said voters will increasingly reject politicians who oppose gay marriage.

In an interview published Friday at, Mehlman, who came out gay in 2010, also said he regrets not speaking out against a 2004 push for gay marriage bans.

After Mehlman came out, many gay activists criticized him for working against the interests of the gay community, particularly as manager of President George W. Bush's 2004 re-election campaign. That year, eleven states approved gay marriage bans with the backing of the GOP.

“At a personal level, I wish I had spoken out against the effort,” Mehlman said. “As I've been involved in the fight for marriage equality, one of the things I've learned is how many people were harmed by the campaigns in which I was involved. I apologize to them and tell them I am sorry. While there have been recent victories, this could still be a long struggle in which there will be setbacks, and I'll do my part to be helpful.”

Mehlman added that “supporting equal rights, including the rights to civil marriage, is a net positive for winning elections, as well as the right thing to do.”

“By contrast, opposing equal rights is a net negative that gets problematic to more voters each year.”