“I have a lesbian daughter,” said Richard Douglas during a debate on WBFF in Baltimore, according to the Washington Post. “I love my daughter, I want no harm to come to her, but our traditions matter and tolerance is a two-way street.”
The Washington Post reported that Douglas said he “didn’t celebrate” the extension of marriage rights for same-sex couples in Maryland in 2012.
“I didn’t agree with the result,” he said, according to the Washington Post.
Douglas is running against Chrysovalantis Kefalas, state Del. Kathy Szeliga (R-Baltimore and Harford Counties) and Anthony Seda in the April 26 Republican primary.
The Washington Post reported that Kefalas, who is gay and former Maryland Gov. Bob Ehrlich’s legal counsel, said in response to Douglas’ comments that marriage rights for same-sex couples is “an issue of individual liberty, equality and dignity.”
“This was a divisive issue in the past,” said Szeliga, according to the Washington Post. “But it’s definitely been settled. What Marylanders care about now are taxes, jobs and the economy.”
Bowie City Councilman Michael Estève, who founded the Maryland chapter of the Log Cabin Republicans, on Thursday told the Washington Blade that he gives Douglas “credit that he talks openly and proudly about his daughter.”
“Maryland has voted and its time to move past the gay marriage issue,” said Estève, who pointed out that he supports Kefalas.
Larry Jacobs, chair of the Equality Maryland board of directors, was far more critical of Douglas.
“I feel for his daughter,” Jacobs told the Blade. “While I agree that traditions matter, it is sad that he puts them ahead of the needs of his own family. If he were my father, I would disown him. So should the voters of Maryland.”