Republican presidential nominee-in-waiting John McCain says same-sex couples should be allowed to enter into legal agreements for insurance and other purposes, but he opposes gay marriage and believes in “the unique status of marriage between a man and a woman”.
“And I know that we have a respectful disagreement on that issue,” Mr McCain said in an interview to air today on The Ellen DeGeneres show.
Mr McCain, who also opposes an amendment to the US Constitution to ban same-sex unions, said people should be encouraged to enter into legal agreements, particularly for insurance and other areas where decisions need to be made.
DeGeneres needled Mr McCain on the issue, arguing that she and the senator from Arizona aren’t different.
Last week, after the California Supreme Court cleared the way for gay marriage in that state, DeGeneres announced on her programme her engagement to longtime girlfriend Portia de Rossi.
“We are all the same people, all of us. You’re no different than I am. Our love is the same,” she said.
Mr McCain said he heard her “articulate that position in a very eloquent fashion. We just have a disagreement. And I, along with many, many others, wish you every happiness.”
DeGeneres steered the conversation back toward the humour she’s known for.
“So, you’ll walk me down the aisle? Is that what you’re saying?” she asked.
“Touché,” Mr McCain said.