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Santorum: Liberals Want Marriage Equality In Order To ‘Undermine Faith’

By Alex Seitz-Wald  

"Santorum: Liberals Want Marriage Equality In Order To ‘Undermine Faith’"

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GOP presidential candidate Rick Santorum has long been known for espousing a frothy mixture of social conservatism and anti-gay rhetoric. On the campaign trail in Iowa yesterday, the former senator explained why he thinks progressives support marriage equality — to “undermine faith.” The Des Moines Register reports:

Speaking to about 190 people at the Lyon County Republican dinner, Santorum pledged to continue his fight against same-sex marriage.

The reason the left has gone after same-sex marriage is because it’s a two-fer,” Santorum said. “When you redefine marriage, you cheapen marriage. You make it into something less valuable, less special … [and] it is a sure bet that will undermine faith.”

Santorum was responding to New York State’s passage of a historic marriage equality bill, which is supported by a majority of New Yorkers, including 56 percent of independents, according to a new poll.

But Santorum’s comments would likely be surprising to the many people of faith who support marriage equality. Numerous Christian denominations now support same-sex marriage, or at least unions, including Evangelical Lutherans, Episcopalians, Presbyterians (U.S.A), adherents of the United Church of Christ, and Unitarian Universalists. Reformed and even some Orthodox Jews also support same-sex unions. And just this week, 200 United Methodist clergy in Northern Illinois have pledged to bless same-sex unions, even though it violates the church’s policy and they risk defrocking.

Meanwhile, religious people have increasingly accepted marriage equality. A March ABC News/Washington Post poll found that 63 percent of white Catholics and 57 percent of non-evangelical white Protestants now support marriage equality — huge increases among both groups over the past decade. Overall, a majority of Americans now support same-sex marriage.

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