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Arne Duncan: Gay marriage should be legal

Dylan Stableford, Yahoo News
The Ticket

A day after Vice President Joe Biden said he was "absolutely comfortable" with gay marriage, signaling the Obama administration's evolving views on same-sex marriage, Secretary of Education Arne Duncan said on "Morning Joe" that he believes it should be legal.

"Yes, I do," Duncan said when asked by Time political analyst and MSNBC contributor Mark Halperin if same-sex marriage should be legal in the United States.

Duncan said he's never mentioned that publicly because, "I don't know if I've ever been asked."

"It only took minutes for the White House to try to fix Joe Biden's comments," joked fellow "Morning Joe" panelist Andrea Mitchell. "Let's see how long this takes."

During a wide-ranging interview with David Gregory on NBC's "Meet The Press" on Sunday, Biden was asked if he supported gay marriage. "I'm absolutely comfortable with the fact that men marrying men, women marrying women, and heterosexual men and women marrying another are entitled to the same exact rights, all the civil rights, all the civil liberties," Biden said. "And quite frankly, I don't see much of a distinction beyond that."

After the interview aired, a spokesman for Biden said in a statement to Yahoo News that the comments were in line with the administration's stance on gay marriage.

"The vice president was saying what the president has said previously—that committed and loving same-sex couples deserve the same rights and protections enjoyed by all Americans, and that we oppose any effort to roll back those rights," Biden's spokesman said. "That's why we stopped defending the constitutionality of Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act in legal challenges and support legislation to repeal it. Beyond that, the vice president was expressing that he, too, is evolving on the issue, after meeting so many committed couples and families in this country."

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