Del. Emmett Burns, a Baltimore County Democrat, says he has changed his mind and will support the re-election of Barack Obama even though the president announced last week he supports same-sex marriage.
Burns, a minister at Rising Sun Baptist Church in Woodlawn, announced last week that he could not support Obama after the president announced his position on the issue of same-sex marriage.
In an interview Thursday, the civil rights activist said his initial decision was based on emotion.
"I was shocked and surprised that (Obama) would make such an announcement," Burns said. "That was certainly the backdrop to my initial reaction."
Afterwards, Burns said he received calls from around the country urging him to reconsider.
Burns said his time as a civil rights activist in Mississippi weighed heavily on his decision to reconsider.
"Many of my friends and colleagues died to get the right to vote," Burns said. "It would be impossible for me to stay home. Someone is going to be president anyway and we should have a say in that."
The delegate said he "does not trust" Mitt Romney, the presumptive Republican presidential candidate.
Instead, Burns said he will now encourage others to split the ticket and vote for Obama and against Maryland's recently passed same-sex marriage law, which he said he expects will be on the November referendum ballot.
"Gay marriage is an abomination," Burns said. "It's the worst thing that can happen to this nation and this state. It's very divisive."