Monday, October 22, 2007

Perkins: Giuliani supports marriage amendment - Perkins: Giuliani supports marriage amendment

Perkins: Giuliani supports marriage amendment
By Sam Youngman
October 20, 2007
Tony Perkins, head of the Family Research Council, told The Hill Saturday that former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani (R) would support a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage.
Perkins said Giuliani told him in a private meeting that if the Defense of Marriage Act appeared to be failing or if multiple states began to legalize same-sex marriages, then he would support the constitutional amendment.
Giuliani did not mention the amendment or the issue of gay marriage during his address to the Values Voters Summit, but that position could win him favor with some social conservatives who view the former mayor warily.
Perkins said that was not enough to assuage his concerns about Giuliani, but “it was nice to hear.”
Former presidential candidate and conservative leader Gary Bauer told The Hill in a brief interview that Giuliani gave a good speech, but the glaring omission of marriage issues was telling.
“To come into a crowd like this and not mention marriage was, I think, a colossal mistake,” Bauer said.
Bauer added that he, Perkins and other social conservative leaders have been meeting with the GOP candidates as they have been addressing the conservative crowd, and after this weekend, they will “release” the leaders to make endorsements as they see fit.
Bauer said he would continue to work with all the campaigns.
Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee was the last GOP presidential candidate to speak to the crowd Saturday, and he was far and away the best received.
Huckabee’s speech at times felt more like it should have been delivered in a Sunday morning sermon than at a political gathering, and the crowd seemed to appreciate it.
Huckabee denied taking indirect shots at his opponents when he said that some have taken more positions on social issues than Elvis had waistlines.
The former governor made a strong appeal to the social conservatives gathered even though their leadership has been less than enthusiastic about his candidacy.
“I don’t want us ever to let expediency or electability replace our principles as the new values,” Huckabee said. “I do not spell G-O-D, G-O-P. Our party may be important, but our principles are more important.”
The former governor said after his speech that he was not suggesting any kind of third-party split, and that he is “not supporting it, advocating it and would not be a part of it.”
Huckabee said he does think supporters of Sen. Sam Brownback (R-Kan.), who withdrew from the race Friday, will come to his side.
“I do think that many of his people will come with us, especially in Iowa,” he said.

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