Marco Rubio: Florida Should Continue Fighting Gay Marriage

Even most hard-line Florida Republicans have accepted that gay marriage is here to stay. As thousands of LGBT couples from the Panhandle to Key West have tied the knot and business leaders have trumpeted the economic boost gay weddings will bring, the state GOP's response has ranged from Attorney General Pam Bondi's complete silence to Jeb Bush's grudging acceptance.

One man, though, remains firmly planted in 2008. And he just happens to be posturing for a presidential run. Prepare to read some painfully stupid quotes from Sen. Marco Rubio.

Rubio told reporters yesterday that he thinks Bondi should keep fighting gay marriage even though she has already petitioned the U.S. Supreme Court and it essentially told her: Thanks but no thanks.

"I do not believe that there is a U.S. constitutional right to same-sex marriage," Rubio told the media. "Now, as I've said before, states have a right to change their laws. I don't believe it's unconstitutional. I just don't believe there's a constitutional right to it."

Fascinating analysis there, Marco. But there's a reason that courts -- not lawmakers trying to whip up their base and hoping to drive sales of their new policy book -- decide what is constitutional.

Perhaps we're being too harsh. Why are you so dead-set against recognizing gay unions, Marco?

"Thousands of years of human history have taught us that the ideal setting for children to grow up in is with a mother and a father committed to each other, living together, and sharing the responsibility of raising their children," he said.

Of course, that idea ignores the decades of actual science showing that children of committed same-sex couples are just as well off -- and perhaps even better adjusted -- than kids with straight parents.

Maybe Marco is holding out on us here. How about a final logic bomb to explain why, when even Jeb says it's time to accept gay marriage is here to stay, Marco is still tilting at windmills:

"The trend that I will not accept," he says, "is the growing attitude that belief in traditional marriage equates to bigotry and hatred. Just as California has a right to redefine marriage to include same-sex couples, Florida has a right to define it as one man and one woman."

Wow. Let's give Rubio some credit for having the cojones to toss a sentence like that out with a straight face. A third-grader could drive a truck through the logical fallacy in that statement.

Allowing same-sex couples to wed doesn't "redefine" anything, because it doesn't preclude straight people from getting married. But that's exactly what Marco wants to do for tens of thousands of normal, loving gay people in his home state.

That is bigotry, Senator, and if it's not exactly hatred, it certainly doesn't discourage it.

Good luck selling that book, Marco.

Follow Miami New Times on Facebook and Twitter @MiamiNewTimes.

KEEP MIAMI NEW TIMES FREE... Since we started Miami New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Miami, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Tim Elfrink is a former investigative reporter and managing editor for Miami New Times. He has won the George Polk Award and was a finalist for the Goldsmith Prize for Investigative Reporting.
Contact: Tim Elfrink