Former Utah Governor Jon Hunstman Jr., (R), who backed civil unions for same-sex couples during his term as governor and spoke at the Equality Utah Allies Dinner, voiced his continued support Wednesday for equal marriage, stating “[I’ve] already spoken out why I think it’s the right thing to do to recognize same-sex marriage.” The former governor, who ran for president in 2012, admits that it won’t happen overnight.
“It’s step-by-step and it’s an evolution that, in this case, is taking us somewhere,” he said. “I think that’s inevitable. I think we’re on a pathway.”
Huntsman was responding to questions from reporters after presenting science and technology equipment to a fourth grade class at Rose Park Elementary School, donated through Chevron’s “Fuel Your School” program.
Current Utah Governor Gary Herbert (R.), called elected officials refusing to defend the state’s same-sex marriage ban “the next step to anarchy.”
Huntsman said that debate is inevitable, as is same-sex marriage.
“That’s not to say at the interim you’re not going to have court cases and pretty heated debates,” he said. “I think that’s just a given.”
Huntsman said that spending tax dollars on the case is up to Utah’s current elected officials. Gov. Gary Herbert, who served as Huntsman’s lieutenant governor and is a supporter of traditional marriage, has said the issue needs to be decided by the U.S. Supreme Court.
Asked if he was considering another run for president, Huntsman said the answer is a “strong no.” He declined make an endorsement for a potential candidate.