"I don't run away from that at all," said Gottwalt, a three-term Republican running for his fourth term.
Gottwalt, also a father of four, said he carried the amendment not out of hate for the gay community, but out of fear that so-called activist judges or legislators could end up defining what he considers a cornerstone of the community.
"It's really unfortunate that it has been characterized as hateful or discriminatory or bigoted or homophobic or the other terms that have been used around it, because that's absolutely wrong-minded," Gottwalt said.
He continued, "This is about marriage. In society throughout world history, when a man and a woman -- complimentary opposites -- come together and there's that potential for the creation of a human life -- it's always been in society's best interest, not even religiously, but in society's best interest, that the child comes into a committed relationship," Gottwalt said.