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Senator Kay Hagan (D-NC) Comes Out for Marriage Equality

Senator Kay Hagan (D-NC) has become the sixth U.S. Senator in three days to come out for marriage equality, in an article in the News & Observer:

Hagan“I know there are strong feelings on both sides, and I have a great deal of respect for their opinions,” Hagan said in an interview. “But after much thought and prayer on my part this is where I am today.

“I know all our families do not look alike,” she added. “We all want the same thing for our families. We want happiness, we want health, prosperity, a bright future for our children and grandchildren. After conversations I’ve had with family members, with people I go to church with and with North Carolinians from all walks of life, I’ve come to my own personal conclusion that we should not tell people who they can love, or who they can marry. It’s time to move forward with this issue.”

Hagan faces a tough reelection campaign next year, the paper reports:

“I’m not interested in playing political pundit,” Hagan said when asked how she thought her stance would effect her re-election prospects. “I’ve never made a decision based on future elections. I’m not interested in that. I’m not interested in casting aspersions on those who view this differently.”

Hagan joins Senators Jon Tester (D-MT), Jay Rockefeller (D-WV), Mark Begich (D-AK), Mark Warner (D-VA), and Claire McCaskill (D-MO), who have all "evolved" on the issue in the past three days.

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  1. Wow. this is big. Especially after the constitutional amendment last year that passed with 61% and she's up for re-election next year.

    Might probably be banking on the fact that there are no credible Republican challengers yet though.

    Posted by: Mitchell | Mar 27, 2013 11:23:47 AM


  2. If you are gay and living in North Carolina, please not this late comer to the table when it comes to re-election. There is sure to be a Democrat who want waffle or sit on the fence then jump the minute he/she figures out non-support can hurt their career. A day late and a dollar short as far as I'm concerned and if there were a better candidate in the next election I'd promptly toss Hagan out.

    Posted by: Mike | Mar 27, 2013 11:32:03 AM


  3. @Mike:

    Hagan is taking a huge political risk here. She is very vulnerable in her re-election battle in 2014, in a state that very recently passed Amendment One to constitutionally ban marriage equality.

    This is definitely not politically motivated, and people need to stop attacking every person who comes out in favor of our rights.

    Posted by: RTHK | Mar 27, 2013 11:44:31 AM


  4. Hagan for re-election 2014!

    Posted by: John | Mar 27, 2013 11:46:26 AM


  5. @Mike what an asinine post. As Mitchell said, Hagan is taking a serious political risk by coming out in support for SSM in a state that less than a year ago voted against it by 61%, especially when she will be up for re-election.

    Posted by: TDSE | Mar 27, 2013 11:48:39 AM


  6. I'm impressed sh'e taking a stand like this when it could well lose her position. Brave people like this give me hope

    Posted by: danswon | Mar 27, 2013 11:51:56 AM


  7. mike's post looks like concern trolling.
    Anyone with a brain in NC who favors marriage equality must clearly see she's the best candidate the Democrats have, as an incumbent.

    Posted by: dw | Mar 27, 2013 11:52:07 AM


  8. Have to echo those who've noted that Mike has no idea of what he is speaking. This is easily the bravest, riskiest of these several announcements in the past few days. She has a tough race coming next year and in a state which voted overwhelmingly just a few months ago to ban even CUs. She's been an ally and I would've been willing to give her (unlike those like Carper in Delaware) a pass had she decided to wait until after her next election. Hers is a campaign deserving our dollars next year.

    Meanwhile, the useless Susan Collins, erroneously hailed by Log Cabin types as the savior of DADT repeal, refuses to announce her support for either marriage equality or DOMA repeal, scared to death of a primary challenge in her own re-election bid next year.

    Posted by: Patric | Mar 27, 2013 11:59:59 AM


  9. Definitely brave, but at this point of the game, if you're a Democrat you must support marriage equality. So let's not act as if politics don't play a role. I appreciate all politicians who come out for our rights but I'm also not desperate for their pat on the back which is what these announcements amount to at this point.

    That doesn't mean this is a BIG step forward. It definitely is and Kay Hagan should be commended because this could very well hurt her badly in her upcoming reelection run. Good for her.

    Posted by: Francis | Mar 27, 2013 12:07:22 PM


  10. Definitely brave, but at this point of the game, if you're a Democrat you must support marriage equality. So let's not act as if politics don't play a role. I appreciate all politicians who come out for our rights but I'm also not desperate for their pat on the back which is what these announcements amount to at this point.

    That doesn't mean this is a BIG step forward. It definitely is and Kay Hagan should be commended because this could very well hurt her badly in her upcoming reelection run. Good for her.

    Posted by: Francis | Mar 27, 2013 12:07:23 PM


  11. This comes right on the heels of two anti-gay pieces of legislation failing yesterday in TN (one being that god-awful "Don't Say Gay" bill) To all those that shake their head in bewilderment at the fact that we gays haven't fled the South in a mass exodus as many have recommended, this is why. I don't want to leave my home, my family, my friends...and shouldn't have to. Rather than flee, I would rather work to change minds of those around me, making MY HOME a better place to live.

    Posted by: RHR IN TN | Mar 27, 2013 12:38:08 PM


  12. Say what you will but Kay Hagan and Mark Begich are showing guts.
    Their reelections in very red states are no sure thing,and they were willing to do what JOn Tester whom is also a Democrat in a Red State wasn't,and that is come out for gay marriage,party plaform or not.
    And Jon Tester,like Rob Portman,has a gay son.

    Posted by: Kevin | Mar 27, 2013 1:23:37 PM


  13. Thank you Sen Hagan. I sure hope that all these Democratic Senators from Red States coming out for marriage equality doesn't turn out to be a Pyrrhic victory, causing the Democrats to lose control of the U.S.Senate in 2014.

    Posted by: andrew | Mar 27, 2013 3:02:43 PM


  14. North Carolina is not quite as red as some here think. We voted for Obama in 2008, the year Hagan was elected. We were the last southern state to adopt a constitutional ban on gay marriage, and it only finally happened because the health care/tea party debacle turned the state legislature over to the Republicans, the same reason Republicans still control the US House although they got a million fewer votes nationwide in 2012. As that episode showed, big victories can have big costs. Hagan's heart has always been in the right place on teh gay, but the emerging open consensus for equality among Democrats is really remarkable. I never thought I'd live to see it. Still, I'd rather have a Democratic Senate after 2014 than have every Democrat announce their support for marriage. We have a big obligation to help these people get re-elected.

    Posted by: Patrick | Mar 27, 2013 5:02:59 PM


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