Press release from Phillies campaign

People often ask me what the "Libertarian position on gay marriage" is or "should be."

This press release from the Phillies campaign, released today, lays it out perfectly, in my view. Note that it's strongly (and unapologetically) divergent from the position of Ron Paul and the other Republican candidates:

Gay Marriage: Marriage is a Basic Civil Right
Gay Marriage - The debate over gay marriage is a wonderful example of what's wrong with Washington. Down the street where I live are two churches. One church views gay marriage with horror. The other has been happily marrying gays for years. The Libertarian position is simple: Gay marriage is purely a personal and religious question, not a question for government to decide. The George Bush Republican party disagrees: They've made it Uncle Sam's business by passing the so-called Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA).

The Defense of Marriage Act is deeply flawed. In 1967, the landmark Supreme Court case, Loving v Virginia found that the right to marry is a "basic civil [right] of man.� Loving v Virginia ended legal discrimination in marriage. DOMA tries to bring legal discrimination back into marriage.

DOMA also says that states are not required to recognize same-sex marriages created in other states. However, marriages are contracts: The interstate validity of contracts is guaranteed by the Constitution's Full Faith and Credit clause. No wonder the Bush Republican Party now wants a Constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage.

When I am elected, I will ask Congress to repeal the Defense of Marriage Act. I will protect the right of States to license same-sex unions or not, as they will. But I will also hold states to the United States Constitution and require them to recognize legal unions created in other states, just as they have always done in the past.States should concern themselves with civil agreements on property, medical care, and protection of children, and not interfere with the personal relationship of those involved. I will encourage Congress to make that the law in the District of Columbia: Government should recognize civil law aspects of domestic partnerships. Government should leave marriage to private individuals and their clergy.

Domestic partnerships range from a a newly-wed couple having children to elderly companions who want rock solid assurance that, if they are disabled, their medical care decisions will be made by someone they trust. If people want to marry and have a ceremony, that is a private matter between them, their friends, and their faith.

Uncle Sam has no business in your bedrooms, your religious ceremonies, or your private life. It is none of the government's business which consenting adults marry each other, and which do not. Do you want your religion's marriage practices protected from government interference? Only the Libertarian Party will protect the privacy of your bedroom and your conscience.