This overwhelmingly Catholic country adopts civil equality for gay couples. The Church's influence has collapsed after the sex abuse crisis. And deservedly so. Stateside, Fred Thompson says his personal belief is that me and my husband should have no civil protections for our relationship. But he adds this:

"I do think that states have the power under our constitution to make their own determination with regard to those matters ... (I) think the federal government's powers ought to be limited to what's set out in the Constitution - and states, with regard to matters that are traditionally state matters, ought to be free to make those decisions themselves, even if Fred Thompson might disagree with them."

It says something that it is so refreshing to hear a leading Republican talk about the limits of the federal government's powers.

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