Republican Liz Cheney admits she was ‘wrong’ to oppose same-sex marriage

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Republican congresswoman Liz Cheney has said she was “wrong” to oppose marriage equality in the past.

The 55-year-old has represented Wyoming’s at-large congressional district since 2017 and is up for re-election next year.

While previewing her campaign on 60 Minutes Sunday (26 September), she made a surprise detour into comments she made in 2013 against same-sex marriage, which fuelled a rift between her and her sister Mary, who is gay.

Nearly a decade on, Liz told 60 Minutes: “I was wrong, I was wrong.

“I love my sister very much. I love her family very much and I was wrong. It is a very personal issue and very personal for my family. I believe that my family was right.

“My sister and I have had that conversation.”

Shocked 60 Minutes host Leslie Stahl replied: “Wow, I was not expecting that.”

“Freedom means freedom for everybody,” Cheney added, quoting her father, former vice president Dick Cheney, who had previously voiced support for marriage equality.

Liz Cheney, who was stripped this year of her position as the third-ranking Republican in the House of Representation for her rallying against Donald Trump’s claims of election fraud, said recently that meeting a trans woman helped give her perspective on her approach to LGBT+ rights.

“We were at an event a few nights ago,” she recalled, “and there was a young woman who said she doesn’t feel safe sometimes because she’s transgender.

“Nobody should feel unsafe.”

Liz Cheney marriage equality row dates back to 2013.

Liz Cheney spoke out against same-sex marriage in 2013, during an unsuccessful run for Senate.

During a spot on Fox News Sunday she said he believed “in the traditional definition of marriage” – despite her own sister being a lesbian.

“I love Mary very much,” Liz said, “I love her family very much. This is just an issue on which we disagree.”

Liz Cheney. (Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images)
Liz Cheney. (Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images)

Mary, who is married to Heather Poe and was involved in the Supreme Court effort to legalise marriage equality in California, responded with a public social media post at the time.

Writing in a 2013 Facebook post, Mary said her sister opposing her right to marry the person she loves left her feeling like a “second-class citizen”.

“Liz,” she wrote, “this isn’t just an issue on which we disagree – you’re just wrong – and on the wrong side of history.”

She later told The New York Times that she would never reconcile with Liz unless she changed her position on marriage equality – the pair had not spoken for months even before her comments.

Overall, support for LGBT+ rights – and marriage equality in particular – has steadily risen in recent years among Republican supporters.

Just 30 per cent of Republicans in 2013 were in favour of it – by June 2021, a thumping 55 per cent proudly said they support marriage equality, according to a Gallup poll.

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