By Neal Broverman
Originally published on Advocate.com June 22 2011 1:55 PM ET
Senate majority leader Harry Reid (right) has lashed out at GOP presidential hopeful Mitt Romney, saying he has flip-flopped on gay marriage — an accusation that isn't true.
Reid told reporters Tuesday that the former Massachusetts governor "doesn't know who he is." The Nevada senator argues that Romney has changed positions on gay rights and abortion rights, and that when he was governor he supported both. But Romney never supported same-sex marriage — even when same-sex marriages began in the Bay State in 2004, Romney said he was forced to comply with the marriage equality ruling by the Massachusetts Supreme Court, which came despite his objections. After the court ruled that barring gay couples from marriage was unconstitutional, Romney started to enforce a 1913 law that barred couples from marrying in Massachusetts if they were not residents, to prevent out-of-state gay couples from flocking to the state to wed. That law was eventually overturned with the backing of current governor Deval Patrick.
Romney has voiced support for civil unions, domestic partnerships, and workplace protections for gays, but he downplayed those positions when he ran for president in 2008.