Jeb Bush Still Says Same-Sex Marriage Should Be ‘State Decision’

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A day before Miami-Dade County could begin issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples pending a judge’s approval, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush (R) said that whether same-sex couples should be allowed to marry should be left up to the state’s rather than the federal government.

“It ought to be a local decision. I mean, a state decision,” Bush said on Sunday in a short interview, according to the Miami Herald. “The state decided. The people of the state decided. But it’s been overturned by the courts, I guess.”

When he was governor, Bush opposed same-sex marriage but he also wasn’t leading the charge of an effort to change the Florida state constitution that would define marriage as between a man and a woman. At the time, Bush argued that that change was unnecessary.

Bush has previously argued that same-sex marriage should be left up to the states rather than decided at the federal level.

In late 2014, The New York Times also pointed out that in a trove of emails a gay Floridian who wanted to work in Bush’s administration when he was governor carefully asked about whether him being gay would be an issue.

“On the other stuff, don’t ask, don’t tell is fine with me,” Bush said, according to the Times. “What you do in your private life is your business. If it crosses over into public policy realm, then that is another matter. If you are comfortable with that, then we can proceed.”

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