Republican New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg has distanced himself from his party's position on same-sex marriage less than a week after the U.S. Supreme Court handed down a decision to overturn a Texas same-sex sodomy law. "I have always thought that people should be allowed to go about their business themselves," Bloomberg said at a news conference. "I don't know why any of these platforms should deal with issues like that."
Bloomberg's comments come one year before New York will host the Republican National Convention. The party's platform at the 2000 convention strongly supported a "traditional definition of 'marriage' as the legal union of one man and one woman," a stance that is endorsed by President Bush.
Gay rights activists have been lobbying for Bloomberg to support equal marriage rights. In a statement appearing in Wednesday editions of Newsday, New York City councilwoman Margarita Lopez said she plans to ask the mayor to perform a marriage ceremony for her and her partner. "That would be a good test for him, to come out of the closet on gay marriages," she said.
But conservative activist Gary Bauer told the New York Post that Bloomberg's position on the GOP platform "would be disastrous for the Republican Party."