POLITICS

Stephen Colbert Presses Rick Santorum On Gay Marriage: 'Hasn't This One Slipped Away From Us?'

11/20/2013 02:24 pm ET

The Colbert Report
Get More: Colbert Report Full Episodes,Video Archive

Former GOP presidential candidate and Sen. Rick Santorum (R-Pa.) waded into the gay marriage debate on a special comedic platform Tuesday.

In a spirited interview with Stephen Colbert, Santorum was asked whether proponents of traditional marriage have lost the issue against legalizing benefits for same-sex couples.

"You've got these 15 states plus the District of Columbia that are riding the rainbow train to helltown right now," Colbert said, sparking a smile from Santorum. "Hasn't this one slipped away from us?"

(Watch the question above, beginning at the 5:05 mark.)

"I think the real problem here is marriage has slipped away from us," Santorum said. "Marriage has devolved into just a romantic relationship between two people. And that's not what marriage is."

"No, it's for transferring property," Colbert joked.

Santorum stressed that his definition was tied to a "relationship that's important for the continuance of society," referring to the ability to conceive children. Back in April, he expressed a similar view on Fox News, saying that gay marriage discourages straight marriage.

That prompted Colbert to jump to the "disturbing news that gay people have children."

"I’ve heard some places they can even adopt children," he warned.

“Every child has the right to their natural mother and father," Santorum replied. "Every child has a natural mother and father and they have a right to that mother and father to give them what only a mother and only a father can give.”

“What if they don’t have a mother or a father?," Colbert asked back. "Wouldn’t it be better for them to have no parents than to be loved by two gay people?"

“The point of the law is to encourage what is best," Santorum said. "It's to set a standard for what is best, not to set a standard short of what is best, because when you do that you get less of what is necessary.”

Santorum has not ruled out another run for president. On Monday, he told the Associated Press that his answer will depend on how things work out both financially and for his family.

Also on HuffPost:

Santorum Answers Sex Qs
Suggest a correction
815 Comments

CONVERSATIONS