Skip to comments.Obama's Honesty on Same-Sex Marriage Long Overdue
Posted on 05/13/2012 7:22:56 AM PDT by Kaslin
President Barack Obama emerged from his ideological closet last week when he said, "Same-sex couples should be able to get married." Obama supported same-sex marriage in 1996. He opposed same-sex marriage, however, in 2004 and 2008 and right up until Vice President Joe Biden announced that he is "absolutely comfortable" with same-sex nuptials on "Meet the Press" May 6. Thus, I would categorize the president's position on same-sex marriage not as having evolved, as he claims, but as a long overdue moment of honesty.
For bonus points: This moment has spared White House press secretary Jay Carney from the contortions he had been forced to perform as he explained why the president opposed same-sex marriage but also opposed state measures to ban same-sex marriage because they "deny rights to LGBT Americans."
Mitt Romney's position on same-sex couples has evolved, as well. In 1994, when he was a candidate for U.S. Senate in Massachusetts, Romney told the gay Log Cabin Republicans that he supported "full equality" for homosexuals. Last week, he sang a different tune when he voiced his opposition to "civil unions" that have "identical" rights as traditional marriage.
Thus, both Obama and Romney have taken positions that appeal more to their respective parties' bases than to moderate voters.
The latest Gallup poll reports that 50 percent of Americans think same-sex marriage should be legal, while 48 percent do not. But there is reason to believe that polls are not an accurate barometer, at least among voters.
Last week, North Carolina became the 30th state to ban gay marriage in its state constitution. In six states and the District of Columbia, where same-sex marriage is recognized, courts or legislators changed the law. But every time a state's voters have had an opportunity to vote on same-sex marriage, they have voted to ban it, not legalize it. Voters in my very blue state of California passed a law restricting marriage to one man and one woman, with 52 percent of the vote, in 2008.
Jonathan Rauch, a gay man who is a guest scholar at The Brookings Institution, estimated that, because people lie, polls are off by a 5-point margin. Rauch sees the Obama decision as courageous but against the president's re-election interest, as it threatens to cost Obama precious votes in key swing states.
Policywise the Obama about-face does not change much. Obama's Department of Justice already announced that it will not defend legal challenges to the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act, signed by President Bill Clinton.
Carney would not say whether the president will go to states to campaign against same-sex marriage bans. It doesn't seem likely, however, as the president told ABC News' Robin Roberts that he thinks the fact that "different communities are arriving at different conclusions at different times" is "a healthy process."
GOP political strategist Rob Stutzman doesn't think the Obama statement is "that big a deal politically," especially because the president "obviously was pushed into it."
Forget the politics, Rauch argued; the Obama announcement is huge culturally. Also, it contrasts well against Romney's journey from one-time courtier of gay votes to tepid supporter of civil unions. (It's not as if Romney looks highly principled on this issue.)
I wonder whether Obama will be able to maintain the tolerant attitude he displayed Wednesday as the presidential campaign heats up. The president told ABC that he supports same-sex marriage laws that are "respectful of religious liberty" and allow churches and faith institutions to determine their sacraments for themselves. Those were reasonable, moderate points -- which fly in the face of his administration's decision to force church-based institutions with deeply held religious objections to provide contraception as part of their employee health care plans.
If church groups can't say no to subsidizing contraception, why would they be able to say no to same-sex couples?
Already activists are calling for the Democratic Party to move its national convention out of Charlotte to punish North Carolina for its vote against same-sex marriage. Some 26,000 people have signed a "say no to discrimination" petition that calls for Democrats to move the confab to a "state that upholds values of equality and liberty."
Much has been written of Romney's sojourn from gay-friendly Republican to pared-down civil-union supporter in an often craven pursuit of voters in the GOP base. The less Romney says about civil unions the better.
Obama has the opposite problem.
In coming home to his support of same-sex marriage, Obama has unleashed his like-minded base. This is the base that has tried to use the courts to force the Boy Scouts to admit gay Scout leaders and its political muscle to coerce church-based charities to provide benefits for domestic partners. Obama's base has a name for people who (like Obama last month) believe marriage is a union between a man and a woman only. That word is "bigot."
And those who hurl it do so in the name of tolerance.
So, after 16 long years, Obama was able to finally finish his waffle.
The only possible reason he could have for doing it is that he knows he is going to lose no matter what he does.
God only knows what else he plans on doing before January 20th.
I pray every day that Obama would be revealed for what he is: a homosexual, clueless, thug Marxist grifter and that he would lose in a landslide in November and never again have a platform from which to speak.
Wait until the denunciations start coming in from Africa, Latin America, and the Middle East, as well as Black, Latino, and Muslim preachers here. He’s compromised himself with Blacks, Latinos, and Muslims (important in Florida and Michigan).
Obama getting panicky. Making slip-shod, short-term decisions.
The Illegal’s raising massive amounts of money and spending it just about as fast. However, if I go into the dog food business, spend a massive amount on concocting a product that dogs hate, and spend even more marketing it, the only thing my huge expenditures will do is make me bankrupt. Looks like the Illegal’s getting into the same spot.
Yes, I know he is ineligible, but rules don't apply to him.
That's why Hillary is working on passage of the "Rights of the Child" treaty. The lame-duck Senate will pass it, and Ubama will sign it.
It will give the UN the tool it needs to extort money from the US.
The logic of taqiyya.
If you believe that you've snorted more coke than Soetoro. Once again race will trump reason with the overwhelming majority of that demographic.
I said they are going to stay home.
Honesty and Mac Daddy, Unable to be spoken in the same breath.
Obama’s hasn’t known Honesty in his entire life,and he has rhe records to prove it.
Outstanding idea. How about Cuba?
Nope, I’m afraid not. This will not cost him much with black voters. I wish it would, but the demagoguery that will be unleashed this year by the Left will have black voters out in full force. The same is mostly true of Hispanics. Obama will promise (for real this time!) to push for ‘comprehensive’ immigration reform, while Romney will be the evil xenophobe who wants to round up all illegals and split up families.
In other words, other issues trump this for blacks and latinos. That this isn’t too big a deal with those groups is proven by the fact that they haven’t injected even the slightest bit of conservatism into the Democratic party on this topic.
As for Muslims, well I don’t think it would matter much unless Michigan is very close, but I think they know that between Romney and Obama, Obama is the one most likely to bow down to Muslim rulers and pursue generally pro-Islam policies. I’m sure Obama would love to speed up already-accelerating Muslim immigration (though to be fair, on this Romney would probably be just as terrible.)
I hope I’m wrong and this does hurt him, but I just can’t be that optimistic about it.
This idea that Obama is finally being honest must not be allowed to stand. I mean, yes, it says he’s been lying all along which says something bad about him, but the fact is that he is still lying.
He says he supports states handling it for themselves. This is a huge lie! First of all, he opposes the federal DOMA which explicitly empowers the states to disregard gay marriages from other states (yes the case can be made, truthfully I believe, that the Full Faith and Credit Clause already allows states to do that, but who thinks Obama would agree with that?). Second, he opposes these state amendments every time they are put to the people to decide. So obviously he supports state decisions only when those decisions are to implement (usually by judicial decree) gay marriage.
But the biggest reason he is lying about this is because of the types of leftwing activist judges he is putting on the courts, especially and worst of all on the Sup Court. Obama knows full well that Kagan and Sotomayor and any other judge he nominates will be a vote to strike down every traditional marriage law and amendment in the nation, and impose in their place national recognition of gay marriage. If this happens, who thinks Obama would criticize the Sup Court for usurping the issue from the states? Of course he wouldn’t. Instead he would applaud the decision, then say the Courts have spoken, and its time to move on.
Republicans need to do a better job of highlighting the judge selection issue, not just to point out Obama being dishonest about letting the states decide on marriage, but also because of a whole host of other issues. Obama can lie and claim he supports an individual Second Amendment right to own guns, but Sotomayor, Kagan, et al will vote to gut the Second Amendment of any real meaning. Obama can claim to support ‘reasonable’ restrictions on late-term abortions, but his judges will strike down any such laws.
It would be nice if the media would point this out. My jaw would drop if a debate moderator asked Obama “you claim to support letting the states decide the marriage issue, but isn’t it true that your judicial selections are a near-certainty to strike down every state decision that doesn’t go the way liberals want it to?” But this isn’t going to happen, so Romney and the Republicans will have to point it out.
That's why he's not bothering to hide who he is any more.
My money is on his creating his own private Reichstag Fire to give him an excuse to declare martial law and cancel the elections.