Meet the Democratic ‘final four’ holdouts on marriage equality

Updated
This combination shows file photos: (L) Sen. Mark Pryor, D-Ark., (Photo by Charles Dharapak/AP Photo, File) (R) Mary L. Landrieu  (Photo by Kris Connor/Getty...
This combination shows file photos: (L) Sen. Mark Pryor, D-Ark., (Photo by Charles Dharapak/AP Photo, File) (R) Mary L. Landrieu (Photo by Kris Connor/Getty...

We’re down to the final four. No, not that Final Four.

In this case, the last one standing will not be crowned the champion. They will not receive a coveted trophy. Instead, they will join the ranks of the other side, remaining behind the times.

Only four Democratic senators remain silent in support of gay marriage.

In the past few days, the number has dropped from seven to four as conservative Democrats “evolve” in their beliefs.

Sen. Bill Nelson of Florida led the charge on Thursday, releasing a statement:

“Thus, to discriminate against one class and not another is wrong for me. If we are endowed by our Creator with rights, then why shouldn’t those be attainable by gays and lesbians.”


The evolution of views continued Friday with Sen. Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota announcing her support for marriage equality, which was somewhat surprising given that Heitkamp comes from a generally conservative-learning state.

Just minutes later, Sen. Joe Donnelly of Indiana announced his support in a statement posted to his Facebook page. In part he stated, “I have concluded that the right thing to do is to support marriage equality for all.”

With rapidly changing views, and even two Republican senators now supporting gay marriage, it’s hard to rationalize why four Democratic senators are still in the closet on the issue.

West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin does not face re-election until 2016. South Dakota Sen. Tim Johnson already announced his upcoming retirement. Arkansas Sen. Mark Pryor and Louisiana Sen. Mary Landrieu face re-election in their red states.

Regardless of their electoral situation, it’s time for these final four to step up and leave this race. Who really wants to be the last Democrat on the wrong side of history?

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Meet the Democratic 'final four' holdouts on marriage equality

Updated