Image: Mary Cheney
Charlie Neibergall  /  AP
Mary Cheney, the vice president’s openly lesbian daughter, is expecting her first child.
updated 12/15/2006 12:37:31 PM ET 2006-12-15T17:37:31

Vice President Dick Cheney’s pregnant lesbian daughter Mary will make a “fine mom,” President Bush said, sidestepping his past comment that a child ideally would be raised by a mother and father.

Mary Cheney, 37, and her longtime partner, Heather Poe, are expecting their first child, which would be the sixth grandchild for the vice president. Cheney was hired last year as an executive for America Online.

“I think Mary is going to be a loving soul to her child. And I’m happy for her,” Bush said in an interview with People magazine.

The Washington Post reported that the baby was due in late spring.

In a 2005 interview with The New York Times, Bush said: “I believe children can receive love from gay couples but the ideal is — and studies have shown that the ideal is where a child is raised in a married family with a man and a woman.”

He sidestepped the issue when questioned by People magazine about whether he still held that belief.

“Mary Cheney is going to make a fine mom and she’s going to love this child a lot,” he said, according to an excerpt from the interview.

During the 2004 campaign, Mary Cheney served as a key aide to her father.

Supports ban on same-sex marriage
Bush has supported a constitutional ban on same-sex marriages but Congress failed to pass it. The vice president’s daughter opposed the measure.

Cheney’s pregnancy has drawn fire from some conservatives, including James Dobson, chairman of the Focus on the Family lobbying group, who has clashed with the Bush administration in the past.

“We should not enter into yet another untested and far-reaching social experiment, this one driven by the desires of same-sex couples to bear and raise children,” Dobson said in a recent commentary published on the organization’s Web site.

However, he said his position was not meant to “harm or insult women such as Cheney and Poe.”

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