Laura Bush has hinted in previous interviews that she’s more supportive of gay rights than her husband, but Tuesday she made it official when she told Larry King she supports marriage equality.
The former first lady isn’t the first political spouse to differ from her husband on gay issues. From Elizabeth Edwards to Cindy McCain, take a look at a few other political wives who have distanced themselves from their husbands when it comes to equal rights.
Cindy McCain — In January 2010, more than a year after her husband, John McCain, lost the 2008 presidential race, Cindy McCain posed for the No H8 Campaign, declaring her support for marriage equality. In posing for the campaign, Cindy aligned her thoughts with those of her daughter Meghan — and directly opposed those of her husband, who doesn’t support marriage equality and is currently opposing the repeal of “don’t ask, don’t tell.”
Elizabeth Edwards — Elizabeth Edwards made it clear in June 2007 that she supports same-sex marriage — six months after her husband, John Edwards, announced his candidacy for president in the 2008 election. “I don’t know why someone else’s marriage has anything to do with me,” Elizabeth Edwards said at a news conference before the San Francisco pride parade. “I’m completely comfortable with gay marriage.” She said her position put her at odds with her husband, who himself had admitted to being “conflicted” on the issue. John Edwards supported civil unions during his campaign but not marriage equality.
Hillary Clinton — Former first lady Hillary Clinton first made an effort to oppose the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy enacted under her husband Bill Clinton’s administration in her 2003 autobiography, Living History, calling it a terrible “compromise.” She’s since become one of the most vocal supporters of repealing the military’s gay ban and taken an active role in the effort to end violence against gays and lesbians around the globe.
Laura Bush — In her new book, Spoken From the Heart, Laura Bush says she warned her husband, George, against making gay marriage a significant issue in the 2004 presidential campaign because the couple had “a number of close friends who are gay or whose children are gay. She furthered her support of equal rights in May when she told talk show host Larry King she supports marriage equality.