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San Diego mayor to lead campaign for same-sex marriage

January 18, 2012 |  7:15 pm

Jerry Sanders
San Diego Mayor Jerry Sanders is set to appear at a Friday news conference in Washington with other mayors to announce the Mayors for Freedom to Marry campaign to win support for same-sex marriage nationwide.

Sanders will be joined by L.A. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and the mayors of Boston, Chicago and Houston. Campaign organizers said that 70 Republican, Democratic and independent mayors support the effort.

Last year Sanders, a Republican, joined Gov. Jerry Brown and the mayors of Los Angeles and San Francisco -- all Democrats -- in urging Congress to overturn a law denying recognition of same-sex marriages.

"The federal government should not be in the business of picking which marriages it likes and which it does not," the four said in a letter to Congress.

In 2007, on the eve of his reelection bid, Sanders dropped his previous opposition to same-sex marriage. In a tearful news conference, Sanders said he could not accept the idea that his daughter Lisa is less worthy of forming a lasting relationship because she is a lesbian.


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Photo: San Diego Mayor Jerry Sanders with his daughter, Lisa, center, and her wife, Meaghan Yaple, after Sanders testified in favor of overturning Proposition 8, the statewide measure banning same-sex marriage.

Credit: Associated Press