December 11th, 2012
10:42 PM ET
10 years ago

Video: Senators on the definition of marriage

(CNN) – Senators Joe Lieberman, John McCain and Lindsey Graham discussed the definition of marriage Tuesday in an interview on "Piers Morgan Tonight," insisting the decision to allow same-sex couples to legally wed should be left up to the states.

"In my state, we're not going to change the traditional definition of marriage and I would support the traditional definition of marriage not out of hate but that I believe that's just best for society," said Graham, a Republican from South Carolina. "At the end of the day states will come out differently on this issue and I think that's the way it should be."

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Reiterating that the decision should be left to the states, Lieberman, an independent from Connecticut, added that it's up to the Supreme Court to answer that question as it plans to hear two constitutional challenges to state and federal laws dealing with the recognition of gay and lesbian couples to legally wed.

The courts decision to take up the case comes weeks after voters approved same-sex marriage in three states: Maryland, Washington, and Maine, adding to the six states and the District of Columbia that already have already done so.

Filed under: 2012 • Joe Lieberman • John McCain • Lindsey Graham • Same-sex marriage
soundoff (18 Responses)
  1. Larry L

    Why not just be fair and completely scrap the laws associated with marriage? Create contractual laws to govern the responsibilities for children, the management of property, and the rights/privileges afforded those who choose to be linked by familial ties. Who cares about the sexual preferences or the gender of those bound by the contracts? If churches want to sanction marriage as some sort of religious ritual good for them – who else cares? How does that impact the members of society who choose to live without those artificial restrictions? You want non-intrusive government? Get it!

    December 11, 2012 10:54 pm at 10:54 pm |
  2. Thomas

    Senators Joe Lieberman, John McCain and Lindsey Graham discussed the definition of marriage Tuesday in an interview on "Piers Morgan Tonight," insisting the decision to allow same-sex couples to legally wed should be left up to the states.

    So what there saying is there spineless punks who live off tax payers money in DC and do nothing.

    It's up to the states , we are useless and spineless .

    December 11, 2012 10:59 pm at 10:59 pm |
  3. Thomas

    why won't these three old men go away ?

    December 11, 2012 11:02 pm at 11:02 pm |
  4. bayousara

    Lindsey Graham and John McCain should be arrested and charged with treason toward the United States. They are doing everything they can to agitate the population in so many topics. They seem to have their hands in just about every controversial pot going on in the country.

    December 11, 2012 11:38 pm at 11:38 pm |
  5. wjmccartan

    So let it be written so let it be done. You guys are goofy, let them have marriage and everything that goes with it, paying taxes as a family, right there the government will make billions of dollars. If your married both your incomes determine what you are or are not intitled to, its not two seperate incomes at one address it combined, that should have made the LGBT scared straight, forgive the pun but I couldn't help myself.

    December 11, 2012 11:48 pm at 11:48 pm |
  6. wjmccartan

    I can't resist, a catholic a jew and an evengelical walk into a bar....

    December 11, 2012 11:50 pm at 11:50 pm |
  7. SwingState

    This is not the 1900s. It's time to stop the intolerance and let consenting adults live their life. They have a right to happiness just like every other American. Furthermore, they need to stop being treated as third class citizens. I know I wouldn't be happy paying taxes but not given the same rights as others who do.

    December 11, 2012 11:54 pm at 11:54 pm |
  8. Squigman

    Three people that never went without, attempted manual labor, got their hands dirty or even made their own bed. They've lived well, and never turned a tap for their pay. The pay, benefits, retirement and perks they afford to themselves is more than that of 25 or 30 people working 40-to-60 hour weeks in normal jobs. And yet no one says that the monies squandered to keep them happy is in any way responsible for being close to a fiscal cliff. This questionable behavior is quietly swept under the rug, if and when it comes up. Go figure.

    December 12, 2012 12:15 am at 12:15 am |
  9. AB

    Its unbelievable that there is even a question about the definition of marriage. It's one man and one woman for crying out loud.

    December 12, 2012 12:47 am at 12:47 am |
  10. me

    Lindsey Graham is against gay marriage? Really??????????

    December 12, 2012 01:02 am at 1:02 am |
  11. J.V.Hodgson

    The fundamental logic of it should be left to the states is flawed.
    a) Because it means within the USA certain sttaes can disciminate against a minority.
    b) Also because the opposition is fundamentally based on religion which has no place in states legal rights for individuals who choose same sex mariage. Banning marriage would also mean another fight for legal recognition of smae sex union to eliminate b)
    In the final analysis one of our constitutions main right is freedom of the individual and while religious America may find some obtuse legalistic way of banning marriage it will be extremely difficult even with obtuse logic to ban same sex unions to avois a) as well as b) above.
    Peronally DOMA is the worst form of religious belief ( which constitutionaly should be separated from government and law making) that ever got passed into law.

    December 12, 2012 01:08 am at 1:08 am |
  12. Hogarth

    Lindsey Graham says, "I would support the traditional definition of marriage not out of hate but that I believe that's just best for society". I would then ask why he thinks this is best for society. It seems to me that to make the value judgment that straight couples are the "best" is to speak PRECISELY from the position of hate. He is saying that gay people are not as good, somehow lesser, than straight people, and that we do not deserve to be married.
    If you do not see the pain this bigotry – for bigotry it is – causes for millions of Americans, then you are either blind or evil.
    I know Mr. Graham is not blind, so I can only conclude that he is evil.

    December 12, 2012 02:01 am at 2:01 am |

    The United States is going the way of ancient Rome–homosexuality–drugs–and the US military spread around the world.

    December 12, 2012 04:24 am at 4:24 am |
  14. Anonymous

    These three are among many who supported southern states seceeding from the Union, supported slavery, supported racial segregation. States rights exists to oppress

    December 12, 2012 04:45 am at 4:45 am |
  15. Equality is for Everybody!

    You can't pick and choose who gets equal rights. Have you learned nothing from the last election?

    December 12, 2012 05:23 am at 5:23 am |
  16. Noel Williams

    It is unfortunate that most of the people in our society pay more attention to what is right and what is wrong than they seek truth.

    December 12, 2012 06:01 am at 6:01 am |
  17. ma & pa

    If this question before tne Court is about legal protection for a surviving partner of a longstanding, cohabitating, asset accumulating, relationship, why bring a reproductive dimension into it by insisting it be called marriage? Why not call it a "civil union" or some such descriptive term, and give equal inheritence, tax, and so forth, protection for the committed partners? To call it "marriage" is to ignore the futility of a relationship that cannot naturally replicate humanity, but is an end in itself. If it is about legalizing futile reproductive practices and calling them love, it's an exercise in the absurd. Many people love one another, with no element of reproduction involved, and know it's not appropriate to marry. Married is not what it's about. Maybe people have forgotten what marriage truly is.

    December 12, 2012 06:10 am at 6:10 am |
  18. ma & pa

    You've been "sold a bill of goods" if you think this is about love or hate. It's about another big step toward distortion and missuse of liberty to cater to unnecessary, distracting appitites; maybe calling longstanding committed relationships "civil unions" to protect partners investments of life and finances would help them. Most of those presented are real "poster-children" unlike many who shelter behind them for cover.

    December 12, 2012 06:35 am at 6:35 am |