There Are Now Only 7 Senate Democrats Opposing Gay Marriage

Michael Catalini
April 2, 2013

Sen. Tom Carper of Delaware endorsed gay marriage Tuesday morning on Facebook, leaving only seven remaining Democratic senators who have yet to announce their support. 

"All Americans ultimately should be free to marry the people they love and intend to share their lives with, regardless of their sexual orientation," Carper wrote. 

Carper's decision comes a day after his Democratic colleague from neighboring Pennsylvania, Sen. Bob Casey, announced his support for same-sex marriage.

Of the handful of Democrats in the Senate who were opposed to gay marriage, Carper stood out.  He was only one of two to represent a state President Obama carried in 2012 (the other is Florida's Bill Nelson). Delaware is the home of Vice President Joe Biden, who memorably announced his support for gay marriage even before Obama did. Since being elected in 2000, he has never faced serious opposition, winning in 2006 and 2012 by nearly 30 percentage points. 

The remaining Senate Democrats who have not endorsed gay marriage are Mark Pryor of Arkansas, Bill Nelson of Florida, Joe Donnelly of Indiana, Mary Landrieu of Louisiana, Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota, Tim Johnson of South Dakota, and Joe Manchin of West Virginia.  Johnson is retiring, but his son may run for his seat.