Mormon GOP Presidential Candidate endorses marriage equality

Timothy Kincaid

February 21st, 2013

Jon Huntsman, former governor of Utah from 2005 through 2009 and Ambassador to China until 2011, was one of the second tier presidential candidates in last year’s GOP primaries. His best showing was in New Hampshire, where he came in third.

Huntsman had a good working relationship with the gay community in Utah, and expressed support for civil unions. Today he penned an article for the American Conservative entitled Marriage Equality is a Conservative Cause:

While serving as governor of Utah, I pushed for civil unions and expanded reciprocal benefits for gay citizens. I did so not because of political pressure—indeed, at the time 70 percent of Utahns were opposed—but because as governor my role was to work for everybody, even those who didn’t have access to a powerful lobby. Civil unions, I believed, were a practical step that would bring all citizens more fully into the fabric of a state they already were—and always had been—a part of.

That was four years ago. Today we have an opportunity to do more: conservatives should start to lead again and push their states to join the nine others that allow all their citizens to marry. I’ve been married for 29 years. My marriage has been the greatest joy of my life. There is nothing conservative about denying other Americans the ability to forge that same relationship with the person they love.

All Americans should be treated equally by the law, whether they marry in a church, another religious institution, or a town hall.

Much more quickly than I anticipated, the trickle of Republican support for equality is becoming a stream.


February 21st, 2013

Fine post with the ‘trickle/stream’ analogy, Timothy; though somehow I can’t help but see these Republican ‘social issues separatist’ more like leaks in the GOP dinghy. And it’s only a matter of time before the ‘party liners’ run out of fingers with which to plug them.

In the interim this ‘whack-a-mole’ game should be very entertaining.


February 21st, 2013

He was the only sane Republican candidate. So of course he had no chance.

Ben in Oakland

February 21st, 2013

And we’re lucky he wasn’t. We might not have a democratic president and senate had huntsman been the nominee. He was the only that integrity, rains, andwasnt crazy .eeryone else had at best. One out of three.

Ben in Oakland

February 21st, 2013

Sorry. Brains. Damnable dysialex..


February 21st, 2013

Not sure how the last place finisher counts as a “stream”, but okay.


February 22nd, 2013

He wasn’t the last-place finisher. He did last longer than that nutjob Bachman, after all.


February 22nd, 2013

This seems a bit late AND convenient. If Huntsmann had the character to go against the grain he would have said this long ago.

I find it insincere for non-sitting politicians to be making supportive comments, ie.) Cheney, Laura Bush, etc. It is never the SITTING Republican Politicians doing so, those who can make legislation actually happen.

Steve, you’re right.

Matt, that ain’t sayin much – lol

I think Huntsmann could win the general, but still not the primaries. So,…bad and good. Only zealots are left in the GOP.


February 22nd, 2013


certainly Huntsman (like Clinton and Gore and most politicians) has grown bolder since leaving office.

but the guy came out in favor of civil unions as sitting governor of Utah. that *is* going against the grain.


February 22nd, 2013

Huntsman was gay-friendly while Governor but he lost favor with his party when he accepted the China Ambassador job from (say his name while gritting yer teeth) Obama. That was too big of an PR obstacle to overcome with the number of teabaggers still running the show.

That, and his waffling about being a true-blooded, hard-core Mormon. That lost Jon’s favorable niche to Mitt.

It’s posturing for 2016. That’s for sure. But it’s politics. And he wouldn’t be one to sign a petition that explicitly was discriminatory…like someone else did to garner favoritism from a powerful political clique.

Governor Romney paved the way for Gov/Ambassador Huntsman, though, in a way. Will Jon need to defend his Mormonism to Dobson and Fischer and the like.

It might be smoother sailing for Huntsman in 2016 and politics might not have any anti-gay political rhetoric to use in 2016 campaigning especially if the SCOTUS rules in our favor this year.


February 22nd, 2013

I voted for Huntsman in the primaries. I like the guy – I’m not a natural fit for all of the Democratic party, and it was an incumbent year (thus no Democratic primary worth mentioning) and I live in a very Blue state. Long shot, but the GOP needs to hear from us. If moderate folks don’t show up for primaries and say “we want the smart, experienced, non-crazy one with actual principles and ethics”, we’re going to the the likes of Bachmann, that pizza douche, Mr. “I can’t think of 3 departments I’d close”, Newt “chemo-divorce” Gingrich, or Mittens.

Jim Hlavac

February 22nd, 2013

Every Hetero has to evolve in their own way — the entire nation is working on it, as fast as they can, with only a few crazies left. I’ve waited for 30 years, I can wait another few.

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