(CNN)— Openly gay talk show host Ellen DeGeneres pressed John McCain Thursday on his opposition to gay marriage.
The presumptive Republican nominee said he believes same-sex couples have the right to legal agreements for insurance and other purposes, but opposes gay marriage. “I just believe in the unique status of marriage between man and a woman,” McCain told DeGeneres.
McCain, who also opposes a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage, said he supports and encourages legal benefits for same-sex partners particularly for insurance purposes. The Arizona senator has said individual states should decide the issue.
The talk show host pushed further, drawing parallels between the right to gay marriage and the suffrage movements for women and African-Americans.
“We are all the same people,” DeGeneres told McCain. “You’re no different than I am. Our love is the same.”
The Arizona senator said that she had given an “eloquent” defense of her position, but "we just have a disagreement. And I, along with many, many others, wish you every happiness."
Degeneres joked: "So, you'll walk me down the aisle? Is that what you're saying?"
McCain’s one word response: "Touché."