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Rep. Liz Cheney says ‘I was wrong’ to have opposed same-sex marriage before

Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.), seen in July, speaks at a House hearing about the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol. (Chip Somodevilla/AP)

Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) on Sunday said she was wrong to have opposed same-sex marriage, a position that once caused an enormous rift in her famous political family.

“I was wrong. I was wrong,” Cheney told “60 Minutes” correspondent Lesley Stahl in an interview that aired Sunday, after Stahl asked how Cheney would defend condemning same-sex marriage in 2013, despite her sister being married to a woman and despite her father, former vice president Richard B. Cheney, coming out in support of same-sex marriage at the time.

“I love my sister very much. I love her family very much, and I was wrong,” Liz Cheney added, appearing emotional. “It’s a very personal issue and very personal for my family. I believe my dad was right, and my sister and I have had that conversation.”

Cheney said she and her sister, Mary Cheney, have since reconciled.

In 2013, as she campaigned to challenge then-Wyoming Sen. Mike Enzi, Liz Cheney publicly voiced her opposition to same-sex marriage and said it was an issue on which she and her sister simply disagreed.

“I believe in the traditional definition of marriage,” she told “Fox News Sunday” then.

Mary Cheney — Liz Cheney’s younger sister, who is a lesbian and married her partner in 2012 — went public shortly afterward, saying of her sister’s position at the time: “You’re just wrong.” Their parents tried to referee the fight, but tension remained long after Liz Cheney abandoned her campaign.

“I love my sister and I’m not going to say any more about it because of my, just my respect for her. My views on it are clear,” Liz Cheney said in 2016.

Her views on LGBTQ rights have since evolved dramatically. In her “60 Minutes” interview Sunday, Cheney spoke about also wanting to ensure that transgender people feel safe.

“This is an issue that we have to recognize, you know, as human beings — that we need to work against discrimination of all kinds in our country, in our state,” Cheney said. “We were at an event a few nights ago and there was a young woman who said she doesn’t feel safe sometimes, because she’s transgender, and nobody should feel unsafe. Freedom means freedom for everybody.”

Despite her stated views Sunday, Cheney in February voted against the Equality Act, which would have amended the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to add sexual orientation and gender identity as protected classes.

Paul Kane contributed to this report.