August 8, 2014 at 3:46 pm EDT | by Michael K. Lavers
Larry Hogan: Position on same-sex marriage has ‘evolved’

Larry Hogan, Maryland, gay news, Washington Blade

Larry Hogan (Photo by Marrh2; courtesy Wikimedia Commons)

Republican Maryland gubernatorial candidate Larry Hogan on Friday said his position on marriage rights for same-sex couples has “evolved.”

Hogan said on News Talk with Bruce DePuyt on News Channel 8 in response to a question about whether he voted for the state’s same-sex marriage law in a 2012 referendum on it that he was “originally for civil unions.”

“I was a supporter of traditional marriage,” he told DePuyt. “It’s an issue that I fully understand. The voters have made their decision. I support their decision and will uphold the law. I’ve evolved I guess on the issue.”

Hogan said marriage rights for same-sex couples, extending in-state tuition to undocumented immigrants and other social issues “are really decided in Maryland.”

“They have no part in this campaign whatsoever,” he said. “We’ve been completely focused on the issues that all Marylanders are focused on right now, and that’s economic issues.”

Hogan, who was a member of former Gov. Bob Ehrlich’s administration, told the Washington Post in June he would not seek to repeal Maryland’s same-sex marriage law if elected governor.

Hogan told the Baltimore Sun editorial board ahead of the June 24 primary that he opposes a transgender rights bill that Gov. Martin O’Malley signed into law earlier this year.

Carrie Evans, executive director of Equality Maryland, welcomed Hogan’s comments on same-sex marriage.

“Hogan’s evolution on marriage equality reflects the reality of many Marylanders who have kept an open heart and open mind on this issue,” she told the Washington Blade. “It is valuable when people share their evolution to demonstrate it is possible.”

Gregory T. Angelo, executive director of Log Cabin Republicans, echoed Evans.

“I’ve had some great conversations with the Hogan campaign over the last several weeks and it’s encouraging to see this evolution on the issue,” Angelo told the Blade. “Mr. Hogan is just one of many Marylanders who has evolved on this issue. He, like many Marylanders, evidently sees civil marriage for committed same-sex couples as no threat to his way of life, and, like an increasing number of Republicans, sees getting beyond the marriage issue as a way to grow the GOP voting base and win.”

Hogan easily defeated Harford County Executive David Craig, state Del. Ron George (R-Anne Arundel County) and former congressional candidate Charles Lollar in the Republican gubernatorial primary.

He will face Lieutenant Gov. Anthony Brown — who publicly supports marriage rights for same-sex couples and Maryland’s trans rights law that takes effect on October 1 — in the general election.

Michael K. Lavers has been a staff writer for the Washington Blade since May 2012. The passage of Maryland's same-sex marriage law, the HIV/AIDS epidemic, the burgeoning LGBT rights movement in Latin America and the consecration of gay New Hampshire Bishop V. Gene Robinson are among the many stories he has covered since his career began in 2002. Follow Michael

  • brians ions

    “Hogan’s evolution on marriage equality reflects the reality of many Marylanders who have kept an open heart and open mind on this issue,” she told the Washington Blade. “It is valuable when people share their evolution to demonstrate it is possible.”
     
    Gregory T. Angelo, executive director of Log Cabin Republicans, echoed Evans.
    ===============================================================
     
    A lot of Republicans all across the country will be doing this kind of two-step as we get closer to a likely 2015 SCOTUS ruling.
     
    There’s opportunity in that for all LGBTs, however. Going forward, quite a number of House and Senate GOP politicians might want to ‘redeem’ themselves with a much easier-to-support simple addition of *sexual orientation* and *gender identity* to the applicable titles/sections of the ’64 and ’68 Civil Rights Acts.
     
    What says LCR about that possibility?

  • El Dorado

    Don’t trust Republicans who are on record opposing gay rights who then promise you they won’t do you any harm if you vote for them. Mitt Romney made similar promises to gay groups in Massachusetts while running for Governor only to backstab gays on issues of marriage equality after he was elected! Theses people will say anything to get what they want then flip flop dramatically to court conservative votes for higher office!

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