The top Republican running for governor of Massachusetts is taking a rare step for a GOP candidate: Playing up his support of the gay community.
Charlie Baker, who is seeking the Bay State's top job for the second time, is launching a new Web video featuring him and his brother Alex, who is gay, talking about when Alex came out. The video was shared early with The Washington Post.
"I say, 'It's no big deal,'" Charlie Baker recalls in the video, which features an apparently candid two-minute conversation between him and his brother. "That's what I remember saying."
The video is being released as Massachusetts marks the 10th anniversary of being the first in the country to legalize gay marriage.
Alex Baker, who married his now-husband soon after gay marriage was legalized, goes on to talk about how that legalization hasn't negatively impacted the state like some opponents claimed and suggests that other states should heed Massachusetts's example.
Charlie Baker supported gay marriage in his failed 2010 campaign for the same office, when his running mate was gay former state senator Richard Tisei (who is now running in a top-targeted congressional race for the GOP against Democratic Rep. John Tierney). But it wasn't a point of emphasis in that race.
Baker is running for the open seat left by retiring Gov. Deval Patrick (D), whom he lost to by six points four years ago in a three-way race. The Democratic favorite is state Attorney General Martha Coakley, who is a strong favorite in early polling.