San Diego Mayor Jerry Sanders asks conservatives to support marriage in new ad

San Diego Mayor Jerry Sanders, one of the chairs of our Mayors for the Freedom to Marry coalition, has filmed a new television advertisement with the Human Rights Campaign and Freedom to Marry where he speaks out about why he supports the freedom to marry for all couples and why other conservatives should do the same. The TV spot is set to air in the Tampa area during the Republican National Convention next week.

Sanders has become a key member of the Republican party who vocally supports marriage for all couples. In the ad, he says:

In 2007 I announced my support for marriage equality for two reasons: Family and Freedom. ... As a Republican, I believe in conservative values, like responsibility and limited government. Marriage strengthens families, and we need more of that, not less.

Our founder and President Evan Wolfson reflected on the ad today in a release. He said:

Republicans talk about values such as freedom, limited government, and personal responsibility, values that support the freedom to marry. Our ad showcases Republicans who are living up to the values they proclaim, pointing the way for the party to get with the majority of Americans and on the right side of history. 

The advertisement featuring Sanders comes just a week after the Republican National Committee released its draft language for the official national party platform. The draft language aims to limit the freedom to marry, saying: "[W]e believe that marriage, the union of one man and one woman must be upheld as the national standard, a goal to stand for, encourage, and promote through laws governing marriage."

This national party platform is out of step with the values of many conservatives and Republicans in the country, including Sanders. This summer, we have been spotlighting other Republican voices speaking up for the freedom to marry through our Young Conservatives for the Freedom to Marry campaign. This week, the Young Conservatives coalition, which amplifies messages from Republicans and Libertarians who reference their ideology when discussing their support for marriage, sent a letter to the RNC condemning their anti-gay platform draft language and asserting that the next generation of conservatives in the United States does not support discrimination. 

Check out the ad from Freedom to Marry and the Human Rights Campaign below: