(CNN) - Bill O'Reilly, the conservative Fox News host, believes same-sex marriage advocates have a more convincing argument than opponents, who do nothing but rehash scripture to make their point.
"The compelling argument is on the side of homosexuals," O'Reilly said Tuesday on Fox. "That's where the compelling argument is. 'We're Americans. We just want to be treated like everybody else.' That's a compelling argument, and to deny that, you have got to have a very strong argument on the other side. The argument on the other side hasn't been able to do anything but thump the Bible."
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O'Reilly has previously stated he takes a libertarian view on the issue, and repeated Tuesday night that it's a decision that should be left up to the states. "I support civil unions. I always have. The gay marriage thing, I don't feel that strongly about it one way or another."
Both sides of the debate clashed this week in Washington as the Supreme Court hears challenges to two cases dealing with the issue.
O'Reilly has been less critical of so-called Bible thumpers in the past. In a May 2009 column on his website, he again argued the matter should be decided by states but also said he understands that "most Americans believe heterosexual marriage deserves a special place in our society."
"Our Judeo-Christian traditions, which have made the United States the most prosperous and just society the world has ever known, speak to a family built around a responsible mother and a father-certainly the optimum when it comes to raising children," he wrote.
But, he argued, people who feel strongly about traditional marriage "have allowed themselves to be intimidated" and have refused to stand up for what they believe in.
"When was the last time you saw a Catholic cardinal or archbishop speak against gay marriage on television? I know–I've invited some of them. They all turned me down," he wrote.
His comments Tuesday weren't the first time he's taken on his own party. Last week, O'Reilly sharply criticized Republican Rep. Michele Bachmann for making "trivial attacks" and unsubstantiated claims of President Barack Obama's so-called perks in the White House.
That's the thing about O'Reilly, he says what he believes and not what "the party" believes. He's nobody's mouthpiece. He's always been that way but for some reason he gets lumped in with the far right...which he is not. He actually thinks for himself and doesn't let others tell him what to think.
When 80% of Americans under 30 want something to happen, it's just a matter of time. You might not like it, but I'd get used to it if I were you. Tick tock......
Son of a gun, Bill is beginning to sound like an old style conservative, you know, I'll leave you alone and you leave me alone, as opposed to the new sharia law obsessed right wingers who apparently want to live out some sick teenage fantasies with the pre-abortion vaginal ultra sound "tests" that no sane doctor would recommend, among one or two other issues.
libertarians are the future.
the GOP is over
O'Reilly's ratings were down last month. The majority of the country now sides with the LGBT community on this issue. His shift to the left is clearly aimed at grabbing some of those potential viewers. The country has gradually shifted to the left because the right has given way too much credence to the lunatic fringe. The Republicans are in the same spot now that Democrats occupied in the late 1970s. The party is too focused on the extremes when most people prefer middle-of-the-road candidates. Furthermore, every time they lose an election Republicans adamantly claim that it's because their positions weren't extreme enough. Fox can't maintain their ratings forever while remaining tethered to that failing bandwagon.
Why is government in the marriage business anyway?
More money for lawyers, what else?.
@Bilbo ... are you even paying attention? The government treats couples that are married and couples that aren't differently – so the issue of who can be married and who can't makes a difference. Wake up.
Bill is a Right Leaning Independent, not a far right Republican. I agree with Bill on this issue and that it is up to the state and thus up to the Residents of each state to decide, but I go one step further and believe the Federal Government should not recognize marriage at all, and only recognize Civil Unions, and the Only benefits that brings you is Next of Kin type benefits.
Being Married with 2 Kids I know that would cost me money every year because I would not get the tax credits, maybe just maybe that could help solve the debt crisis, I am willing to try anything to right the ship and prevent the US from sinking.
As with most Republicans, when O`Reilly speaks . . . follow the money trail to understand his motives and intentions. Always
Will wonders never cease?
Bill O'Reilly turning around and biting the gnarled and withered claw of a fist that feeds him.
"Mr. Inside Edition" was always a self proclaimed "conservative" anyways. Real conservatism comes from one's faith, family, tradition and way of life and one's determination to "conserve" such things.
Rob – he's said he's an independent – but he's been clearly Republican. Al Gore could call himself a Republican – would that make him one?
Sounds like he's getting tired of living in fantasy land, and trying to pull the rhetoric back to reality. Something the Republicans need very badly, to focus on reality, stop living in the echo chamber.
I actually agree with O'Reilly about 'not caring'.
But what I *like* to hear...is someone bashing the 'bible thumpers'.
Get the god-freaks out of my government.
We don't need them or their supersticious mumbo-jumbo.
I'd be fine with a civil union for myself and my partner, but they don't have them in Florida.
That said, our church (Episcopal) blessed our union as partners over a decade ago. So ironically, my partner and I already have the blessing of our church, but do not get the same civil benefits enjoyed by by our heterosesual friends, coworkers, and neighbors.
I have faith in Amercia, that one day this will all be sorted out...but making history can take time.
@rs – Perhaps the "foundation" was really only gravel to begin with.
Never in my life would I expect to hear Bill O'Reilly go against his party line. I am absolutely shocked. Maybe he is waking up and smelling the coffee. I'm actually gaining a little respect for him. But he has a long ways to go.
Must be looking for a sweet CNN deal.
The union between a man and a woman is the only way to create new life. A union between two men or two women cannot product new life. It is not about the bible, it is about biology and reproduction. Bill, is that compelling enough?
he knows which way the wind is blowing....he has to make a living, right?
Why is the government in the marriage business? Well . . . Where do you go to get a marriage license? Where do you file it after the wedding? Why do the majority of marriages in America take place outside of a church? Frankly, I don't understand why the churches are even given a say in this. They have the right to refuse to conduct a ceremony on their property but that is where the church's opinion should stop.
When fools open their mouths, only foolishness comes out.
Holy Cow. I may lean toward maintaining traditional marriage BUT this movement of O'Reilly toward logic and tolerance intrigues me.
"it is about biology and reproduction. Bill, is that compelling enough?"
So you are saying that post menopausal women and infertile men and women should be denied the right to marry?
For all the people wondering where this came from. For the most part, Slight Left leaning Democrats, Slight Right Leaning Republicans, and Middle of the Road Independents. You will find you agree with Bill's positions a lot more if you did not demonize him for working on a Far Right Network, for going after Obama over financial issues, or for going after people for being liars ro story tellars.
I am not going to say you will always agree, but he is for me the most agreeable Talk show host on TV right now. The Talk Show host I disagree with most is Hannity and then a close second is Maddow, Olbermann and Mathews.
Tide goes in tide goes out, you can't explain that.