PolitiFact: Fact-checking Jeb Bush’s position on gay marriage and adoption by gays

FORT MYERS, Fla.- We’re still waiting to see if former Florida Governor Jeb Bush will commit to a Presidential Campaign, but his critics are already on the attack. The Democratic National Committee says Bush is against gay marriage and opposes gay couples adopting children.

Jeb Bush served eight years as Florida governor. During that time, our team of researchers at PolitiFact found he consistently opposed gay marriage.

Bush has also made several public statements since leaving office in 2007. In March 2013, he told reporters “I’m a supporter of traditional marriage. I do think these decisions should be made at the state level.”

PolitiFact ruled the statement that Jeb Bush opposes gay marriage as MOSTLY TRUE on the Truth-o-Meter.

“The reason we knock that down to mostly true is that in recent weeks, especially with the run-up to a potential presidential campaign, he softened that quite a bit,” PolitiFact reporter Joshua Gillin said.

What about Bush’s position on same-sex couples adopting?

In 2004, a federal court upheld a ban on gay adoption.

“He had said in a news release that he supports that decision. that he thinks that children should be in a family with a mother and a father. Well, that ban was struck down in 2010, and he didn’t really say any thing about that much,” Gillin said.

Bush’s staff released two statements to PolitiFact addressing both gay marriage and the adoption issue.

On same-sex marriage: “We live in a democracy, and regardless of our disagreements, we have to respect the rule of law. I hope that we can also show respect for the good people on all sides of the gay and lesbian marriage issue – including couples making lifetime commitments to each other who are seeking greater legal protections and those of us who believe marriage is a sacrament and want to safeguard religious liberty.”

On gay couples adopting: “Previously, I opposed gay adoption, but it has since become the law in our state, and I respect that decision.”

As the U.S. Supreme Court prepares to hear arguments on same-sex marriage, and the field of Republican candidates expands, it’s an issue that will likely come up again.

To read the entire fact-check, click here.

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