non-fiction

One Time, George W. Bush Didn’t Want to Condemn Gay Marriage

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You might’ve read how President George. W. Bush, a “compassionate conservative,” refused to let his then-senior adviser Ed Gillespie use a speech at Furman University in 2008 to wax horrific about gay marriage, and how it would ruin the nation. But as former speechwriter Matt Latimer says in his new book, Bush told Gillespie, “I’m not going to tell some gay kid in the audience that he can’t get married,” and he didn’t want the speech to come across so “condemnatory.” This is totally a reason to cut Bush some slack, right?

Hahahaha. Wrong. For his 2004 re-election, Bush made banning same-sex marriage — via the federal constitution — a major tenant of his campaign. It was a rallying cry to bring conservatives to the polls.

So, great, four years later he wasn’t so willing to stand in front of an audience of Americans advocating for discrimination. But he built his White House career on it.