David Zalubowski / AP
Colorado Democratic Governor Jared Polis married longtime partner Wednesday, marking the first gay marriage for a sitting governor of the United States.
In 2018, Polis became the first openly gay man ever to be elected governor of the United States.A decade earlier, he was the first openly gay man elected to the United States House.
“During Jared’s career in Congress, you know, we didn’t aim to be the first of anything. It sort of turned out that way,” her husband said, Marlon Reis.
As recently as 2014, same-sex marriage was banned in Colorado. The United States Supreme Court legalized same-sex marriage nationwide in 2015.
“As I was growing up, marriage wasn’t even in the realm of possibility,” Reis said. “And in fact, the reality was that there was a lot of misinformation about what could potentially happen if you went out – what opportunities would you lose, how that would negatively impact you. So for a long time, the idea of getting married, we haven’t talked about it. “
The two men are now in their forties. Polis noted the stereotypes that came with being gay when he was younger.
“When people thought of homosexuals they unfortunately thought of AIDS,” he said. “That was, I think, in both of our cases, our parents ‘first fears, they were like,’ Oh, I hope you don’t get AIDS. Be careful.’ That’s the main thing you knew about homosexuals in the ’80s and’ 90s. ”
The couple tied the knot on Wednesday in a traditional Jewish ceremony at the University of Colorado in Boulder.
Polis and Reis have decided to celebrate their wedding on an important day for them personally: the 18th anniversary of their first date. They chose CU-Boulder because that’s where Reis graduated from college.
“We met online and went on a date and we went to the Boulder bookstore and then went to dinner,” Polis said.
During Wednesday’s ceremony, the couple’s 7-year-old daughter served as the bridesmaid; their 9 year old son was the ring bearer.
Polis said their daughter was probably happier than anyone with the wedding.
“She really wanted to be a bridesmaid. She was prancing all over the place. She has a great dress. She’s awesome.”
Their son was happy too, but more ambivalent about it all.
“Children are so modern that their reactions to things are sometimes funny. Our son asked us honestly, “Why do people get married? “said Reis.
He said he explained the legal rights given to married couples and that it is an “expression of the care you feel for each other”.
In practice, Reis has been seen as the state’s first gentleman since Polis took office, but Polis has said marriage means the world to them.
“People might say it took us 18 years to get there, or you might say it took six years to get there,” Polis said, defeating the Supreme Court ruling in Obergefell vs. Hodges.
“But it was great to celebrate our love for each other with our family.”