GOP’s Sen. Alan Simpson Backs Gay Marriage in New Ad
Former Sen. Alan Simpson, (R-Wyo.), stars in a new 30-second television ad aimed at Western states that will promote the legalization of same-sex marriage, Political reports.
"I was raised here, Cody, Wyoming," Simpson, 82, says in the commercial. "It was a town of western values: Independence, freedom. I'm a Republican and the party's basic core is government out of your life and the right to be left alone. Whether you're gay or lesbian or straight, if you love someone, and you want to marry them, marry them."
"I have had a wonderful married life, why shouldn't somebody else have the joy of marriage? Live and let live," he adds. "It is very simple."
The ad was created by Freedom to Marry and the organization says the spot will start airing Tuesday on national cable and network Sunday political shows in Washington, D.C., Colorado, Oklahoma and Wyoming.
"We're really hopeful this will do enough to spark conversation, to make sure people see it as marking the next step in the movement toward freedom to marry nationwide," Freedom to Marry President Evan Wolfson told Politico.
In a statement Wolfson said:
"Speaking as a conservative, a lifelong Republican, and a son of the West, Senator Simpson talks of his values of freedom and limited government and the joy of marriage. The ad shows the bipartisan momentum for the freedom to marry. And recent rulings against marriage discrimination by nine out of nine federal district judges show the legal trajectory of our campaign: Toward more freedom, more dignity, and more families enjoying equality under the law."
Simpson served in the Senate for nearly 20 years and though a Republican, he has supported a number of social issues like abortion rights and LGBT rights. He's criticized the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell policy," and in 2001 became the Honorary Chairman of the Republican Coalition, a gay-straight alliance connected to the GOP.
More recently, Simpson signed a brief with other Republicans that was filed in the 10th Circuit Court in order to support same-sex marriage. The 10th Circuit took up the issue after federal judges in Utah and Oklahoma ruled that those states' bans on gay marriage were unconditional, the Huffington Post reports.
The federal appeals court is scheduled to hear Utah's case Thursday and Oklahoma's case on April 17.
Watch the ad below: