Laura Bush for Gay Marriage and Pro-Choice

In her interview with Larry King Tuesday night, Laura Bush said that she is for gay “marriage.” In her own words:

“When couples are committed to each other and love each other, then they ought to have, I think, the same sort of rights that everyone has… I also think it’s a generational thing…. That will come… I understand totally what George thinks and what other people think about marriage being between a man and a woman… I guess that would be an area that we disagree.”

Mrs. Bush also talked about a 2001 interview Katie Couric about abortion. On the day of President Bush’s 1st inauguration, Couric asked Mrs. Bush if she wanted Roe v. Wade to be overturned. Mrs. Bush answered “no.” Here’s how she said it to King:

“I think it’s important that it remain legal because I think it’s important for people — for medical reasons and for other reasons.”

(HT: Russell Moore)


  • Alex Chediak

    Maybe I’m missing something, but didn’t she say “no” on Roe v. Wade being overturned because, in addition to wanting to avoid problems for her husband on his 1st inauguration day, that is her view? I mean, she wants abortion to remain legal.

    If I’m not mistaken, I think Cheney (being more libertarian-leaning) is also not opposed to gay “marriage”.

  • Matt Stokes

    I proudly voted for GWB twice, but no one should be surprised by this. If this is news to you, you haven’t been paying attention. And of course, the First Lady’s views are not that of her husband.

  • Paula

    It never ceases to amaze me that such close family members can have such divergent opinions on such important moral issues. It makes one wonder if they’re truly invested in them or they’re supportive of them for political reasons.

    Let’s face it, in 2000, no pro-choice, pro-gay marriage president would have been elected on the Republican ticket, simply because he wouldn’t make it through the primary process. EVERYONE is a die hard conservative during primary season.

    It’s something we need to keep in mind in the next election cycle (and a reason I have a hard time trusting Romney’s change of heart on the abortion issue).

  • andy

    “It never ceases to amaze me that such close family members can have such divergent opinions on such important moral issues.”

    Interesting insight, Paula.

  • Mitch

    This does bring up some valid points for serious discussion but I have to be honest here. I just can’t help snickering at the uber conservative hand wringing this one is going to cause!

    p.s. Good one, David!

  • Matt Stokes

    Mitch and David – nice job of being smug, but every conservative media outlet in the country – National Review, Weekly Standard, etc. – knew Laura Bush had liberal views on these issues. Get a grip.

  • Kelly

    Paula, I have no doubt that most of the leadership who claim to support such issues do so for political reasons. Not always, but most of the time.

    I admit I found it odd that you would find it odd that close family members could hold different views. Most of the families I know are full of people/couples where they say “lets go cancel each other out!” when they go to vote! It is as common as rain in my experience. Not to many people live in a conservative or liberal echo chamber, and opposites can attract! With respect and pure, honest curiosity, if I may ask in a public forum, does everyone in your family share your views? Everyone?

    The real story here is not so much the opinions of the former President, or the former First lady, or the former VP and his wife. It is the opinions of their children.
    They look at abortion, and are less comfortable than their parents, though they want it to remain legal, yet it is true that the rising generations are less comfortable with it. Every poll bears this out.
    Even more intersting I think are the younger Bush, Cheney, and their peers opinions on gay rights and gay marriage.

    Mrs. Bush is right about it being a generational thing. I was recently told by a 35 year old woman that she ‘supports gay rights and getting rid of don’t ask don’t tell, but not gay marriage’. She seemed starteled when the other 9 people at the table (all hetero, all under 40) rounded on her. She thought she was taking a ‘liberal’ position, which, compared to her parents, no doubt she is. But, to her peers, she uttered the verbotten, and was looked at as a bigot. I found myself (the irony) in the uncomfortable position of telling the others to call off their dogs and leave her be.

    In twenty years, gay rights/marriage/military service wont even be a major issue. It’s a generational thing, and we are way past the cultural tippping point on these issues.

    Now, abortion. That, I suspect we will still be discussing. For a very, very long time.

  • Tim Webb

    I’m always amazed at how evangelicals always want to overlook the inconvenient truth that the Bushes are liberal United Methodists, regardless of whatever “evangelical” (whatever that means) twist they have to it.

  • David Vinzant

    Well said, Kelly.

    Matt, Unfortunately, most conservatives get their “news” from Rush Limbaugh and Fox. I doubt they’ve given much attention to her positions in the past. Her views on abortion were fairly well-known during the Bush presidency, but I don’t remember her being this forthright on her support of same-sex marriage. Did she make such clear statements in support of gay marriage in the past?

  • paul

    “It makes one wonder if they’re truly invested in them or they’re supportive of them for political reasons.”

    What I said about Bush on the comments section of this blog for many years. If Bush had REALLY wanted to throw some severe roadblocks into the procedure of getting an abortion, he could have done so, at least during his first 5 years in office. The fact that Republicans intentionally worded a bill as to be unconstitutional (the original version of the late-term abortion ban) only goes to prove this further. So much of the moral debate that goes on with “conservatives” is so clearly just for show.

  • DennyReader

    I also think it’s a generational thing…. That will come

    The problem with Christians is their obstinate adherence to a bronze age mythology as their moral authority. It is about time that we base our morality on popular opinions.

    Christian evangelism is offensive but we must have social conformity.
    The school official who nixed a girls’ high school basketball team’s planned trip to Arizona once supported a controversial program that required ninth-graders to attend a “freshman advisory” class at which gay upperclassmen shared stories of their high school experiences.

    Parents who were unhappy with the class were even more outraged to learn that students who attended were asked to sign a statement promising not to tell others — including their parents — about what was said in class.

    … Hebson made national news for supporting an initiative at Deerfield High School that required freshman students to participate in orientation panel discussions, one of which was led by members of the school’s Straight and Gay Alliance Network. During the seminars, upperclassmen spoke to the ninth graders about a variety of topics affecting homosexual teens, including their own personal experiences — and all students were required to sign confidentiality agreements swearing never to disclose what they heard.

    Parents were not allowed to attend the panel discussions, leading some to call it an attempt to indoctrinate students into a homosexual lifestyle.

    And so the decline of civilization begins…

  • paul

    If Fox News is the only place you can get your news from, it’s not news. Ever. In what was supposed to be a news article, inflammatory language was used throughout.

    You know, the kind of thing they tell you not to do in a high school journalism class.

    Find me that story on CNN, and it happened. But as long as all you have is a Fox “News” article, you might as well have found WMD’s. (Another thing which Fox reported and no one else ever did)

  • Derek Taylor

    I definitely agree that we need to get our news from more than one source and not from just one political perspective. But Fox News is a legitimate news outlet and they are important too, because there is an inherent left wing bias in the mainstream media. They are willing to ask questions and chase leads that others simply won’t. I worked with journalists for about 7 years and can tell you that they are mostly good people, but there is a very strong “group think” among journalists and it is decidedly left wing. There just isn’t any debating this point.

  • Mitch


    Please know that I had no intention of being smug. I don’t really care whether National Review, Weekly Standard, or any other media outlet knew what Laura Bush thought about these issues. My only comment was that I get a kick out of the consternation it causes when some (maybe not you but some) right wing, evangelical zealots see any discussion of something like this.

    If I wanted to be smug, I might mention this sentence from your first post above:

    “And of course, the First Lady’s views are not that of her husband.”

    and advise you that the word “that” should be replaced by the word “these” so that your demonstrative pronoun agrees in number with the noun to which it refers (btw, that would be “views”). But, like I said, I’m not trying to be smug. So, I won’t do that.

  • Mitch

    Thanks, Donald. Those mirror image typos get me everytime. Guess I have no business giving Matt grammar pointers if I can’t get it right myself!

  • paul

    Denny — too busy for my own good.

    Derek — most conservatives I know don’t watch Fox “News” because they realize that it’s tabloid journalism at best.

    Most of the “left wing bias” that people talk about is inflated nonsense. Yes, those in the media tend to be more liberal. However, when you get to the actual news reporting, most of these guys take their jobs very seriously.

    Now, the guys at Fox are great at what they do — but what it is, is not news. It’s 24 hour right wing commentary on the news. Which is fine. But call it Fox Opinion, not Fox News.

    Before you mention MSNBC, I will remind you, MSNBC’s NEWS reporting is fantastic. But yes, their op-ed shows are nothing but the center-left version of Fox.

  • DennyReader

    Derek — most conservatives I know don’t watch Fox “News” because they realize that it’s tabloid journalism at best.

    Good point Paul. I am sure you know all conservatives and you certainly would be a good judge of what constitute as a conservative.

    I am sure you are absolutely correct that most conservatives you know don’t watch fox. That is why Fox consistently have the highest rating which means that its audience is mostly liberals and independents. Wait, I just have a crazy thought. Maybe, just maybe the conservatives that you know are not really conservatives and you are the one that is biased. I know it is crazy but it’s just a thought.

  • paul

    Guy with fake name —

    Fox’s high ratings aren’t proof of there being a lot of conservatives in the country, it’s proof of a lot of morons in it.

    I’ve come to the conclusion that there are two kinds of conservatives out there (to broadly generalize). There are Buckley conservatives, and there are Palin conservatives. Buckley conservatives, I might not be able to agree with, but I respect the fact that their opinions are well researched, logical and sensible. Palin conservatives are the ones that are conservatives because they feel it in their hearts, because Obama is a weird sounding name and because rates of violence are higher around the border. (the first is foolish, the second is foolish and xenophobic, and the third is false and proven so with a 30 second google search — unless, of course, the internet is a vast liberal conspiracy).

    Guy With A Fake Name, your post has already proven which camp you’re in.

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