R.I. Bishop Blasts New Gov. on Marriage

By Advocate.com Editors

Originally published on Advocate.com January 08 2011 2:10 PM ET

The leader of Rhode Island's Roman Catholics said marriage equality is "morally wrong," and that the newly sworn-in governor and other lawmakers should not be pushing to legalize it in his state.

Bishop Thomas J. Tobin was reacting to marriage equality legislation submitted Thursday to the Rhode Island general assembly, according to The Providence Journal. The legislation is backed by Gov. Lincoln Chafee, who called for marriage equality in his inaugural address. Tobin also criticized Chafee for not holding a prayer service before his inauguration.

“It is particularly disturbing that our new governor, who has trumpeted his desire to bring our state together in unity, would adopt such a very divisive agenda item as one of his first priorities,” Tobin said in a statement, according to the Journal. “His proposal violates the sincere conscience of many of our citizens and inflames passions on both sides of the issue. ... Our state leaders could better serve all Rhode Islanders by working on initiatives that will create jobs and improve the overall economic health of our state.”