As Delaware governor, he signed a bill that defined marriage as being between a man and a woman in 1996. Now, 27 years later, the Human Rights Campaign gives Sen.
Tom Carper a perfect score on LGBTQ issues in Congress. That man, who turned from opponent of marriage equality to LGBTQ rights supporter, announced his retirement last week.
Unlike other Senate races across the country, though, there is little doubt who will succeed him. He endorsed Delaware’s lone representative in the House, Lisa Blunt Rochester, as his successor in a news conference last week. “I spoke with her this morning, I said, ‘You’ve been patient, waiting for me to get out of the way, and I’m going to get out of the way, and I hope you run, and I hope you’ll let me support you in that mission,’” he said with a laugh. “And she said, ‘Yes I will let you support me.’ And so I’m going to.’” Carper plans to serve out the remainder of his term, which ends in 2024.
He serves as chair of the Senate’s Environment and Public Works Committee. Previously, he was chair of the Homeland Security Committee.