Same-sex marriage could give Republicans the lead, Ralph Reed says

The Faith & Freedom Coalition chairman believes young Americans' opinion about the issue could change.

Ralph ReedGage Skidmore/Wikimedia

Faith & Freedom Coalition Chairman Ralph Reed believes that Republicans have the upper-hand in upcoming elections because of a widespread commitment to traditional marriage.

In an interview published Friday, Reed said that all of the prospective 2016 Republican presidential candidates are "pro-life, pro-family and pro-marriage," and that evangelical Christians will not vote for a candidate that supports same-sex marriage.

"That's the position that we take," he told Bloomberg TV.

"If you poll Republican primary voters, 75 to 80 percent of them are in support of traditional marriage."

Reed also said that some Democrats may not be honest with pollsters when asked about same-sex marriage.

"And what happens is – if you talk to pollsters who poll this – is there's a lot of minority voters who are traditionally Democratic voters, but they're also people of faith," he explained. "And they tend to tell pollsters that they're going to vote one way, and then they go in and vote another way."

"Political Capital" host Al Hunt pointed out that young Americans are overwhelming in support of same-sex marriage, but Reed said that their feelings may change.

"A lot of the people who in the 60s and 70s were protesting the Vietnam War, and for legalizing drugs, were voting for Ronald Reagan in 1980 and '84," he said. "People change."

The conservative activist said that gay marriage is a hot button topic that places Republicans ahead of Democrats in the minds of evangelicals.

"It's definitely a winner," he proclaimed. "And it's a winner in ways that surprise a lot of people."

Reed also said that, for the Coalition, there isn't a clear favorite in the GOP primary race.

"It's kind of all jumbled up," he admitted.

"They really like [Texas Senator] Ted Cruz, but they like [former Arkansas governor] Mike Huckabee, they like [former Pennsylvania senator] Rick Santorum... I think [Kentucky Senator] Rand Paul's got some jazz... I think they're going to kick the tires and look at... the more established, front-running-type candidates."

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