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Matt Brown Shifts Stance on Gay Marriage (posted Feb. 26, 2006)

Democratic Senatorial candidate Matt Brown has changed his position on gay marriage. Appearing on the WJAR-TV show "10 News Conference" with Jim Taricani, Brown said when he announced his Senatorial run, he had been in favor of civil unions but opposed to gay marriage, but now supported gay marriage. He said that several states around the country had legislation on civil unions but they included different rights so he had concluded that was not the best way to secure basic rights for gay people.

Asked about Bishop Tobin's recent comment that Catholic politicians who did not support Church doctrine on abortion should resign their positions, Brown said "no" he did not agree with the Bishop's advice. "We have separation of church and state," he said. "These elected officials who are Catholic should do what they think is right."

Brown called on opponent Sheldon Whitehouse to debate him on the issues of the campaign. "I have challenged the other people in this race to put their ideas forward," he complained. But so far, Whitehouse has refused to debate him.

Brown indicated he supports the right of illegal aliens to obtain government-funded health care. Even though Governor Don Carcieri has called for an end to this practice, Brown said, "I disagree with the Governor." Those who go to school and need health care ought to get it, he said.