Sen. Tim JohnsonTim JohnsonCourt ruling could be game changer for Dems in Nevada Bank lobbyists counting down to Shelby’s exit Former GOP senator endorses Clinton after Orlando shooting MORE (D-S.D.) announced his support for same-sex marriage on Monday, leaving just three Senate Democrats opposed to gay marriage.
“After lengthy consideration, my views have evolved sufficiently to support marriage-equality legislation,” Johnson said in a statement. “This position doesn’t require any religious denomination to alter any of its tenets; it simply forbids government from discrimination regarding who can marry whom.”
Over the last several weeks, a dozen Democrats and two Republicans have endorsed gay marriage, which polls suggest is now favored by a majority of voters.
Gay-rights advocates are hopeful that the growing public support will herald the striking down of prohibitions on same-sex marriage throughout the country.
The Supreme Court last month held hearings on cases challenging the constitutionality of California’s Proposition 8, which banned gay marriage in the state, and the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which denies some benefits to same-sex partners.
Johnson follows Sens. Joe DonnellyJoe DonnellySenators introduce dueling miners bills Government to begin calling Indiana residents Hoosiers Pence meets with Kaine, Manchin amid Capitol Hill visit MORE (D-Ind.) and Heidi HeitkampHeidi HeitkampSenate Democrats brace for Trump era Senators introduce dueling miners bills A small business executive order: Justification for regulation MORE (D-N.D.), who announced their support for gay marriage on Friday. Sens. Mark KirkMark KirkGOP senator: Don't link Planned Parenthood to ObamaCare repeal Republicans add three to Banking Committee Juan Williams: McConnell won big by blocking Obama MORE (Ill.) and Rob PortmanRob PortmanHillary gives Bernie cool reception at Trump inaugural lunch GOP governors defend Medicaid expansion Senators introduce dueling miners bills MORE (Ohio) are the only Republicans to publicly back same-sex marriage.
In March, Johnson announced that he would not run for reelection.