GOP governors move focus away from same-sex marriage

In what may be a bid to attract more voters ahead of the 2016 presidential election, Republican governors across the country have begun to soften their once fiery rhetoric on the issue of gay marriage.

“I don’t think the Republican Party is fighting it,” Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker told the Associated Press in an interview at this weekend’s National Governor Association meeting in Nashville, Tenn.

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While the issue is “important” Republicans “haven’t been talking about this. We’ve been talking about economic and fiscal issues. It’s those on the left that are pushing it,” according to Walker, who is appealing a federal judge’s ruling that struck down his state’s ban on same-sex marriage. 

Walker is widely expected to be a candidate for the 2016 GOP presidential nomination, along with New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, whose state seems set to recognize gay unions.

A recent Gallup poll found that 55 percent of Americans support same-sex marriage, an all-time high on the issue. At least 20 states now allow gay marriage.

On Wednesday Colorado became the latest state to have its ban on gay marriage overturned, though it’s pending on appeal. Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio and Tennessee are slated to give their arguments against their same-sex marriage bans on Aug. 6 before the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati.