Paul Ryan Now Supports Adoption for Gay Couples

Rep. Paul Ryan, at a town hall meeting Monday, said he would not vote against gay couples' right to adopt children.

BY Michelle Garcia

April 30 2013 6:52 PM ET

Rep. Paul Ryan said he now regrets voting against adoption rights for Washington, D.C.'s same-sex couples.

Ryan made the statement at a town hall meeting in Wisconsin Monday, after a constituent confronted him on his poor rating on the Human Rights Campaign's legislative index. Ryan voted in 1999 in favor of banning same-sex couples from adopting in the District of Columbia, over which Congress often exerts control. He said he regretted voting against the bill, and said gay and lesbian couples are capable of providing a loving home to children, Think Progress reports.

"Adoption, I’d vote differently these days," he said. "That was, I think, a vote I took in my first term, 2000 or 1999. I do believe that if there are children who are orphans who do not have a loving person or couple — I think if a person wants to love and raise a child they ought to be able to do that. Period. I would vote that way. I do believe marriage is between a man and a woman, we just respectfully disagree with each other on that issue."

Ryan also said he would vote in favor of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, which would make it illegal to discriminate against a worker based on his or her sexual orientation, as a similar law was enacted in his home state decades ago. He said, however, that he would have to learn more about a transgender-inclusive version of the bill in order to decide how he would vote on that.

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