Coming Soon: Obama to Endorse Federal Marriage Equality?
There’s a relatively lengthy piece on Politico today that is absolutely worth a few moments of your time. There’s an argument to be made that President Barack Obama in preparing to endorse federal marriage equality before the coming election.
The move would reiterate Obama’s intense commitment gay rights to members of the LGBT community that may not have noticed that this president has done more for LGBT Americans in three years than any other president has ever done while in office. (No, seriously.)
An official line in the sand regarding gay marriage would do little to alienate evangelical Christians – they’ve already thrown their lot in with Perry or Romney. And an official endorsement would honestly tell us very little about the man behind the presidency that we don’t already know. Remember, a leaked document from 1996 from then aspiring State Senator Obama included full marriage equality as one of his nine core beliefs.
“The initial question the president faces is, does he come out for same sex marriage now or after the election?” said Richard Socarides, president of Equality Matters, a gay rights organization. With polls trending toward public acceptance of gays and lesbians tying the knot, he said, “it may be riskier to wait.”
Endorsing gay marriage now, Washington Post columnist Ruth Marcus wrote recently, could help Obama win back skeptical moderate voters and rekindle flagging enthusiasm among young people, who broadly support marriage equality.
“Mr. President, what better moment will there be? [Next year] you might lose,” she wrote.
Advocates argue that support for gay marriage could be Obama’s secret weapon for the 2012 election.
Only time will tell for sure, but the Obama administration’s role in the collapse of DADT, declaring DOMA unconstitutional, and movement on ENDA all make a strong case that federal marriage equality will be on the table in the next four years.
Fingers crossed, eh?