MSNBC’s Richard Lui to GOP Rep on Gay Marriage: ‘What If One of Your Children Were Gay?’

MSNBC’s gay marriage advocacy continued unabated on Friday. Speaking with Congressman Jason Chaffetz (R-Ut.) on March 15, host Richard Lui asked the congressman if his support for traditional marriage would change if “one of your children were to be gay.”

Lui’s question came following the Senator Rob Portman (R-Ohio) announcement that his son is gay and that he now supports same-sex marriage.  Lui pushed the MSNBC gay marriage agenda by peppering Chaffetz with questions such as:

Does his [Portman] revelation though change your perspective on this?...But you would still not support marriage equality?  [See video after jump.  MP3 audio here.]   

Despite Lui’s biased questioning of the congressman, Chaffetz would not be cornered, and instead offered an articulate response:

I just believe in traditional marriage. That’s what I believe in. And I believe somebody who is gay can still be very happy and thrive and we want nothing with but the best for them. I don't want to discriminate against them, but I just happen to believe in traditional marriage.

Lui’s questioning of Chaffetz would probably be vastly different had the issue not been one of MSNBC's favored topics.  One wonders whether or not Lui would have asked Chaffetz whether he would support his daughter using a gun for self-defense from an attacker.

MSNBC has been on an anti-gun crusade over the past several months, and such questioning would not occur, but the network's hosts are happy to press Congressman Chaffetz on the issue of gay marriage. 


See relevant transcript below.


Jansing and Co.

March 15, 2013

10:06 a.m. EDT

RICHARD LUI: Congressman Jason Chaffetz, Republican Congressman from Utah. Always good to see you, representative, and let’s start with this. You heard the conversation here, the opportunity for the Republican Party here at CPAC to lay out some definition. Do you think this is this showcasing a split though when we’re just listening to the last couple of pieces of sound here within the Republican Party?

JASON CHAFFETZ: No, look, Marco Rubio and Senator Paul I should say Rand Paul, look, they are some of the rock stars and rising stars. They got new ideas, they’ve got a fresh approach, they represent a different demographic than we have had in the past, they are the next generation. Look, the Republican Party is about freedom and liberty and that is what we should be talking about. Democrats I think do a better job of sort of talking about the emotional side of things, they do a better job of talking about the cause. Republicans tend to talk about issues, and I want to get us back to talking about the cause that we have. That’s the kind of the Reaganesque, Reagan approach that we have but this country is the greatest country on the face of the planet, and we have focus on liberty and freedom.

LUI: When we here the applause lines of ObamaCare as was just said this morning, you heard them as well, but when you put that up against some of the other discussions you just spoke about new issues and the internet for instance and some people say that is a different tone. Do you think though overall that Republicans are striking a different tone overall?

CHAFFETZ: I'm very optimistic and still cry at night every once in a while that Mitt Romney is not the next president, but we are getting over it. The internet for instance is something when I got a chance to speak that is what I spoke about. I spoke about look, here is a new frontier, conservatives should be leading the charge, we have this interesting intersection between the first amendment and the fourth amendment, the right to privacy. We’re sponsoring a number of bills that would lead on the geo-location and on internet radio fairness and all of these types of things. The issues may change from year to year, but our principles of freedom and liberty, we have got to do a better job of communicating and talking about those.

LUI: Many critics would say that. Also huge news this morning, Senator Rob Portman reversing his stance on same-sex marriage, because he has said his son is gay in a op-ed in the "Columbus Dispatch.” He wrote this.  We conservatives believe in personal liberty and minimal government interference in people’s lives. We also consider the family unit to be the fundamental building block of society. We should encourage people to make long-term commitments to each other. And when we look at that comment that was made by Senator Rob Portman and that revelation, do you think this will change the conversation?

CHAFFETZ: Well, I think that it will continue to dialogue and the discussion. I know that if anybody who knows Rob Portman knows that he is sincere he’s honest he cares about his family he’s passionate. I mean all of those positive things, and I know this is very heart felt and he believes it. And gosh, more power to him. He believes really does this, and I respect him for it.

LUI: Do you think this will change the issue for Republicans or will this stay pretty much a decision made by each lawmaker every representative or specific families would you say and for you?

CHAFFETZ: Yeah. I you know, I happen to be one that thinks that a lot of this should be made at the state level and how we do it in Utah may be different than how they do it in Massachusetts. That’s where we ought to be having this discussion, but I appreciate him being brave enough to get out there and talk about what he really believes in. 

LUI: Does his revelation though change your perspective on this?

CHAFFETZ: No, I still believe in traditional marriage, and I would remind my friends and colleagues who disagree with me, that it is interesting to me that those who advocate the most diversity and diversity of thought sometimes have a hard time with somebody that disagrees with them. I just happen to believe in traditional marriage. That is where I'm at and what I believe in, and Rob Portman has changed his position, and I respect that. Jon Huntsman did the same thing.

LUI: And if one of your children were to be gay, you would not change your perspective is what you’re saying?

CHAFFETZ: I would love them with all of my heart, all my heart, absolutely.

LUI: But you would still not support marriage equality?

CHAFFETZ: I just believe in traditional marriage, that’s what i believe in. And I believe somebody who is gay can still be very happy and thrive and we want nothing with but the best for them. I don't want to discriminate against them, but I just happen to believe in traditional marriage.

LUI: Okay. Thank you so much, Congressman, Jason Chaffetz taking a little bit of a break from CPAC. Thank you so much.

Events CPAC Sexuality Homosexuality Same-sex marriage MSNBC Jansing & Co. Richard Lui Jason Chaffetz Rob Portman