So maybe, as Doc Brown would say, in considering the subject of gay rights and Republicans, I'm not thinking four-dimensionally. My instinct tells me that a presidential candidate who supports gay rights cannot make it through the gauntlet laid down by social conservatives in the GOP primary. Here's why I might be wrong:
1. So if you're Sen. Rob Portman, and you're likely to be in the VP nominee mix in 2016, your support for gay rights separates you from the other potential ticketmates. If you're Marco Rubio, picking Portman would help in Chicago and potentially bring in some credibility with younger voters. By 2016, given the trajectory of the issue, it will probably break 55 to 45 against the GOP or worse.
2. Thought bubble: Marco Rubio came out on a charm offensive on immigration a few months ago and has seen no deterioration in his poll numbers. If he had instead come out with a view on gay marriage that government shouldn't be involved at all and marriages were up to churches, would the results be any different? I recall the immigration backlash against Sen. John McCain and it's true that the passions on that issue were and are no less strong than on gay marriage within the GOP base.
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- Who are the real gay marriage bigots?
- Why is American internet so slow?
- What would a U.S.-Russia war look like?
- Don't worry: World War III will almost certainly never happen
- How to take the perfect profile picture for online dating, according to science
- What the collapse of the Ming Dynasty can tell us about American decline
- Watch The Daily Show mock Fox News' confused man-crush on Vladimir Putin
- The one simple thing that can make you much more impressive
- Religious liberty should be a liberal value, too
- The Daily Show's Aasif Mandvi dismantles another ObamaCare myth
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