131 Republicans To SCOTUS: Marriage Equality Will Protect Children

Former RNC Chairman Ken Mehlman rallied the brief's signatories.

As promised, a broad coalition of 131 Republican leaders, including many former governors and members of Congress, have submitted an amicus brief urging the Supreme Court to rule in favor of marriage equality in the Proposition 8 case. In their brief, they recognize that hundreds of thousands of children are already being raised by same-sex couples, and their families would benefit from marriage:

Hundreds of thousands of children being raised by same-sex couples — some married, some precluded from marrying — would benefit from the security and stability that civil marriage confers. The denial of civil marriage to same-sex couples does not mean that their children will be raised by married opposite-sex couples. Rather, the choice here is between allowing same-sex couples to marry, thereby conferring on their children the benefits of marriage, and depriving those children of married parents altogether. […]

It is precisely because marriage is so important in producing and protecting strong and stable family structures that amici do not agree that the government can rationally promote the goal of strengthening families by denying civil marriage to same-sex couples. As British Prime Minister and Conservative Party Leader David Cameron explained, “Conservatives believe in the ties that bind us; that society is stronger when we make vows to each other and support each other. So I don’t support gay marriage despite being a Conservative. I support gay marriage because I’m a Conservative.”

In contrast, the many conservative groups that filed briefs against equality, such as the Mormon Church, the Catholic Bishops, and the Family Research Council, imagined a universe where same-sex couples never raise children and are prevented from doing so when same-sex marriage is not legal. These conservatives recognize that any argument based on protecting children is an argument for marriage equality.

Here is a list of some of the notable members of the Republican party who signed onto this brief:

Members of Congress

  • Former U.S. Senator Larry Pressler (R-SD)
  • Former U.S. Representative Charles Bass (R-NH)
  • Former U.S. Representative Mary Bono Mack (R-CA)
  • Rep. Richard Hanna (R-NY)
  • Former U.S. Representative Michael Huffington (R-CA)
  • Former U.S. Representative Nancy Johnson (R-CT)
  • Former U.S. Representative Jim Kolbe (R-AZ)
  • Former U.S. Representative Susan Molinari (R-NY)
  • Former U.S. Representative Connie Morella (R-MD)
  • Former U.S. Representative Deb Pryce (R-OH)
  • Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL)
  • Former U.S. Representative Chris Shays (R-CT)


  • Former Gov. Paul Cellucci (R-MA)
  • Former Gov. Gary Johnson (R-NM)
  • Former Gov. and Secretary of Homeland Security Tom Ridge (R-PA)
  • Former Gov. Jane Swift (R-MA)
  • Former Gov. Bill Weld (R-MA)
  • Former Gov. and EPA Administrator Christine Todd Whitman (R-NJ)

Other Prominent Figures

  • Former RNC Chairman Ken Mehlman
  • Former George W. Bush Secretary of Commerce Carlos Gutierrez
  • Former Reagan White House Chief of Staff Ken Duberstein
  • Former FCC Chairman Michael Powell
  • Former Reagan Office of Management and Budget Director David Stockman
  • Former FEC Chairman Michael Toner
  • Former World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz
  • Academy Award winner and former Carmel, CA Mayor Clint Eastwood
  • Hewlett-Packard CEO Meg Whitman

(HT: Kathleen Perrin.)