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Simpson: GOP, Western values align with marriage equality

Published April 9, 2014 7:12 pm

This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2014, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

As Utah's battle over marriage equality moves to the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver, a former Republican senator is calling on the public to embrace the "live and let" attitude characteristic of Western heritage and his own political party.

Alan Simpson, who represented Wyoming for 18 years in the U.S. Senate, delivers that message in a new ad in support of gay marriage. The ad was paid for by the advocacy group Freedom to Marry. In the ad, Simpson says:

"I was raised here, Cody, Wyoming. It was a town of western values; independence, freedom. I'm a Republican and the Party's basic core is government out of your life and the right to be left alone. Whether you're gay or lesbian or straight, if you love someone, and you want to marry them, marry them. I have had a wonderful married life, why shouldn't somebody else have the joy of marriage. Live and let live. It is very simple."

Simpson joined 20 other prominent Western Republicans in filing amicus briefs in the Utah and Oklahoma cases at the 10th Circuit Court in support of marriage equality. In that filing, the Republicans said marriage equality is in line with conservative Western values of freedom and liberty.

— Brooke Adams