March 22, 2015 at 10:04 am EDT | by Michael K. Lavers
Ted Cruz to announce presidential bid

Ted Cruz, United States Senate, Republican Party, Conservative Political Action Conference, CPAC, gay news, Washington Blade

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) on Monday will announce his presidential bid. (Washington Blade photo by Michael Key)

U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) on Monday will formally announce he is running for president.

The Houston Chronicle on Saturday reported the Texas Republican is expected to make his announcement at Liberty University in Lynchburg, Va., where he will speak at a convocation ceremony. ABC News said Cruz’s aides have confirmed he will officially declare his candidacy on Monday.

The Canadian-born Cruz, 44, is the first Republican who will formally declare their presidential aspirations.

The Texas Republican last October said he still plans to introduce a proposed constitutional amendment that would ban judges from overturning state marriage laws.

“I’m a constitutionalist,” Cruz told the Washington Blade in January after President Obama’s State of the Union address. “From the beginning of this country, marriage has been a question of the states, and we should not have the federal government, or unelected judges, setting aside the policy judgment of the elected legislatures and imposing their own instead.”

Cruz last month reintroduced his bill that would block the federal government from recognizing the marriages of gays and lesbians who live in states that have yet to extend marriage rights to same-sex couples. The conservative firebrand during this year’s Conservative Political Action Conference was among those who repeatedly highlighted his opposition to gay nuptials.

Cruz last week introduced a resolution alongside U.S. Sen. James Lankford (R-Okla.) that urges Congress to kill the Human Rights Amendment Act of 2014 that would protect LGBT students from discrimination at religious schools in D.C. The two Republican senators also introduced a separate resolution that urges federal lawmakers to strike down another D.C. law that bans employers in the nation’s capital from discriminating against employees based on their decision to have an abortion and undergo other reproductive health procedures.

“The D.C. Council is attempting to force religious institutions to provide services, make employment decisions, or participate in activities that directly violate their faith,” said Cruz in a statement.

The Washington Blade will provide additional information and reaction to Cruz’s announcement as it becomes available.

Michael K. Lavers is the international news editor of the Washington Blade. Follow Michael

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