Reports & Research

Senator Kerry and Senator Edwards on marriage equality and other forms of partner recognition

Report Type: 
August 29, 2004

Marriage equality for same-sex couples has emerged as a major political issue in the United States. Senators John Kerry and John Edwards have publicly opposed same-sex marriage but supported other rights for same-sex couples.


  • I will vote against [the Defense of Marriage Act], though I am not for same-sex marriage, because I believe that this debate is fundamentally ugly and flawed.”
  • I support civil unions, which afford same-sex couples equality at the level of state policy.”


  • “I personally do not support gay marriage.
  • “I believe gay and lesbian relationships should be treated with respect and should be extended benefits under law.”