April 4th, 2013
01:38 PM ET
7 years ago

Reagan siblings at odds over same-sex marriage

(CNN) – Two of the late President Ronald Reagan's children are taking opposing stances on same-sex marriage, as Supreme Court justices weigh a federal ban prohibiting marriages between gays and lesbians.

Michael Reagan, a conservative author, defended a controversial op-ed piece warning of a "slippery slope" after same-sex marriage approval during an interview with CNN's Piers Morgan on Wednesday.

"I think it does send a slippery slope," Reagan said. "I think if you accept the redefinition of marriage then you're going to have to accept the redefinition all the way down the line."

In the op-ed, Reagan argued that making same-sex marriage legal could result in "a very slippery slope leading to other alternative relationships and the unconstitutionality of any law based on morality. Think about polygamy, bestiality, and perhaps even murder."

Speaking on CNN, Reagan said similar questions have been posed in courtrooms without angry backlash from same-sex marriage proponents.

"When they're posed in a court of law to a solicitor general or to someone else, there's no outcry. There's no outrage," he said. "But if I quote or I use those same words in an op-ed piece, that are being used in courtrooms across America, somehow there's all this outrage that is out there."

Michael Reagan's stance is a far cry from the views of his sister Patti Davis, who told the New York Times her father would have supported allowing gays and lesbians to marry.

In the article, Davis recalls a friendship between her parents and a lesbian couple who once babysat the Reagan children.

"I grew up in this era where your parents' friends were all called aunt and uncle," Ms. Davis told the Times. "And then I had an aunt and an aunt. We saw them on holidays and other times."

"We never talked about it, but I just understood that they were a couple," she continued.

On CNN, Michael Reagan also recalled friends of his parents who were in a committed same-sex relationship.

"I have friends together 40 years. Forty years they've been together. Great Republicans. Great friends of my dad. My God, I've been with these people for 40 years, love them to death," he said.

"The reality of it is, I don't believe in gay marriage, as many people don't believe in gay marriage. I think you can have a debate on that. I don't believe in it. I think it does send a slippery slope," he continued.

Filed under: Ronald Reagan
soundoff (141 Responses)
  1. Tim Brown

    Uh Ron is on the board of American Atheists geniuses.

    April 4, 2013 09:47 pm at 9:47 pm |
  2. yo

    These republicans are so out of touch with reality...

    The child of their hero saying that marrying two loving gay people leads to bestiality ?
    Their newspaper actually printing that ??
    None of their leaders reacting and kicking this insane person out of the party ???

    And THIS are the people that get about 50% of the votes... exactly how sad can a nation become?

    April 4, 2013 09:52 pm at 9:52 pm |
  3. dee

    Michael is a 'fake Reagan' because his father as much as let the world know he cared nothing for him. Ron did not go to his 'son's' wedding he was busy attending the Nixon wedding instead. Michael is no talent hack who only has a job because of his name.

    April 4, 2013 09:56 pm at 9:56 pm |
  4. Brandon

    It's called legal precedent. If one group changes the rules to marriage, other groups can use that as reason to change it further.

    April 4, 2013 10:03 pm at 10:03 pm |
  5. Nero

    to Jack 2, gay marriage is not a perversion and cannot lead to children who have mental and possibly other disabilities. That's mainly what makes incest so wrong. Kinda like a baby whose mother smoked crack. 2 women or 2 men together, how is that immoral? Because a book says so? If that's your only reason, then you need to quit believing fairy tales. The christian god is a farce and if he's not, may he strike me dead this moment.... yep, didn't think so, I'm still here. Get a grip on reality and quit living in ignorance.

    April 4, 2013 10:09 pm at 10:09 pm |
  6. thiagan

    Marriage is the eternal union between a man and a woman before God and Society. Anything else is not marraige.

    April 4, 2013 10:17 pm at 10:17 pm |
  7. John in San Diego

    This creep just LOVES running around using the name of his adoptive father. He wishes he had Ronnie's blood running through his veins, but will never EVER be a true Reagan.

    April 4, 2013 10:17 pm at 10:17 pm |
  8. blake

    Patti Davis. Reagan in name only. Just another far left looney.

    April 4, 2013 10:49 pm at 10:49 pm |
  9. B-13

    Republicans officially have no rational argument against gay marriage... thanks for proving it again Michael Reagan!!

    April 4, 2013 11:06 pm at 11:06 pm |
  10. Sotzume

    MIchael Reagan has used his adopted father's name to his own advantage...he has no skills that I can discern other than to play social conservative to earn his living...he is a user and a fraud.

    April 4, 2013 11:13 pm at 11:13 pm |
  11. The Thinker1958

    People keep defending Traditional marriage as if it was an amazing experience for everybody.

    April 4, 2013 11:28 pm at 11:28 pm |
  12. cc3

    What is he talking about that the same language has been proposed in courtrooms without backlash? The recent SC case? I think pretty clearly people have called that BS, but in a civil way as it is a formal argument. He's delusional to think that his slippery slope argument holds water. Why are these opponents always referring to bestiality? Is it like the anti-gay preachers who so frequently end up gay? Is there something repressed there?

    April 5, 2013 12:46 am at 12:46 am |
  13. stevehc1

    Michael Reagan and his ilk are genuinely ignorant people with little intellectual capacity. As a result, they *desperately* cling to extremely concrete, black-and-white thinking that belies a nearly complete lack of faith in humanity and extreme fear of any societal change whatsoever. The belief that if we accept gay marriage then we somehow "must" eventually come to accept bestiality – or polygamy, or pretty much anything else that the majority abhors – is nothing more than child-like.

    April 5, 2013 01:37 am at 1:37 am |
  14. GO_GOP

    The only thing relevant here is that our Lord does not approve it. Period. We are a Christina country and we will NOT have anything not approved by our Lord here. If you want to marry (i.e. the gays) leave my country.

    April 5, 2013 02:02 am at 2:02 am |
  15. Kate

    I feel bad that Ronald's children were so dysfunctional. He was my President growing up and from what I determined a darn good one.I think Miichael has adopted child syndrome, and Patti dishonored her parents to the point of shame. Maureen (Michaels sister with Jane Wyman) was allegedly closest to Ronald though but she died in 2001. And Ronald Reagan has no biological grandchildren to carry on his lineage and legacy. I just think Ronnie was a better President and husband than he was a father but I still think Reagan's children have disappointed him. Michael is trying to honor his legacy but he does not have the talent or the gift of gab like Ronnie did. I disagree w/Patti on this too.

    April 5, 2013 02:05 am at 2:05 am |
  16. Vicki

    Ron Reagan and Patti Davis both are more reasonable about most things and that is why they are progressives who believe that everyone has a right to marry the one they love. Republicans are wrong of this and wrong on everything in my opinion. Just wrong all the time.

    April 5, 2013 02:47 am at 2:47 am |
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