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Once again, Obama’s view on marriage comes under scrutiny

Community/Meta Marriage equality

By Jacob Combs

LGBT media outlets were abuzz yesterday about a questionnaire from the Washington Blade sent to the various presidential candidates regarding their views on LGBT issues.  Not surprisingly, none of the Republican candidates responded to the Blade inquiry, but the Obama campaign’s long response (which can be read in full here) listed the administration’s many accomplishments in advancing legal protections for LGBT Americans.  Once again, though, what was perhaps most notable about the response was that it contained absolutely no mention of marriage equality.  And with that omission, many voices in the LGBT community found themselves asking, once again, does Obama deserve our support?

I’ll go on the record right now to say that my answer is a firm yes, and that I also understand and share the frustration of LGBT advocates who find the president’s glacial ‘evolution’ on marriage equality painful and transparently political.  In making the argument for why LGBTs should support Obama in the coming election, though, I see three main points for why he is absolutely the best choice: his past record, his opponents’ positions, and the timeline of when his views might change.

The statement which the Obama administration provided to the Blade is a powerful document, and a concise but pointed reminder of how much the president has accomplished on LGBT rights since he took office.  The repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell put an end to a 17-year old law that unfairly discriminated against gay and lesbian servicemembers and forced them to lie on the job about their personal identity.  Obama’s directive to the Justice Department to stop defending the Defense of Marriage Act has already resulted in two district court decisions striking down the law, and will no doubt continue to have an impact in the years to come until that odious provision is finally repealed or ruled unconstitutional for good.  These are just the banner accomplishments: we have had smaller but no less important victories as well, including a national HIV/AIDS strategy, expanded hospital visitation rights, and the most LGBT appointments to both the executive and judicial branches in our nation’s history.

On the Republican side, the candidates’ positions on LGBT rights range from bad to terrible.  Gingrich, Romney and Santorum all favor a federal constitutional amendment that would ban marriage equality, taking away legal marriages from couples that already have these rights.  They support defending DOMA in court and oppose the repeal of DADT.  In essence, all three candidates have promised that if they were elected president, they would work to erase the many victories that our community has seen in the last few years and cement second-class citizenship for LGBTs across the country.  For LGBT voters looking for a better option than Obama this November, there simply isn’t one.

And finally, the timeline for Obama to finish his evolution.  Many in the community believe that Obama has tacitly acknowledged that he will come out in full support of marriage equality should he win a second term.  Certainly, his past actions and rhetoric show that the end result of his ‘evolution’ must be full support for marriage equality, and these advocates acknowledge that support for marriage could hinder Obama electorally in what will probably be a tough contest this November.

But Obama may not even get the opportunity to wait until 2013 to finish evolving.  Just this week, Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, the chair of this fall’s Democratic National Convention, announced his support for a proposal (initiated by Freedom to Marry) to add marriage equality to the Democratic party platform before the nominating convention in September.  Last week, 22 Senators said that they supported changing the platform language as well.  President Obama is, of course, the head of the Democratic party, and the momentum in his party’s ranks (both among politicians and voters) is building mightily towards supporting marriage.  If support builds for the new platform language before the convention, Obama might not have any choice but to throw in his support as well–it would be remarkable and uncomfortable for a party’s leader to accept its nomination but oppose a new platform with widespread support.

None of this is intended in any way to be an argument for letting Obama and his administration off the hook.  Like everyone here at P8TT, I feel strongly about marriage equality as one of the defining LGBT issues of our generation.  It is high time for Obama to finish his evolution, and to lead his party and our nation to full marriage equality.  Marriage advocates will be continue to be disappointed in the president until he announces his support for the issue, and we should be.  But I reject the notion that LGBTs should sit out this election because Obama hasn’t done enough for us, and the idea that we have to vote for Obama because we have no other choice.  Supporting President Obama in November is not a choice borne out of necessity or desperation.  It is a conscious decision to support a candidate who has stood up for our community in so many ways, and who can continue to do great good for it.  Politicians are politicians, and they need us to push them to be better than they are.  Obama may not have been perfect on LGBT rights in his first term, but, to borrow a phrase from his predecessor, he’s done one heckuva job.

56 Comments

  • 1. Jared R  |  March 9, 2012 at 9:08 am

    This article is exactly what our community needs to hear. Yes, I agree that Obama could do more to support our futures and should take a bold stand for the right side of history. But this is an election year. We can all stay in dream land and think if I do not support Obama, my life will change. FACT: if Obama does not get reelected, it will be one of the other clowns on the right. Their views of our community would be a reversal of fortune. For me it is a choice of continuing down the path of equality or reversing the trend back to second class status. Not voting because he has not come out in full support of marriage is stupid, short sighted, and a vote against equal rights. Wake up people who do not want to vote this year. Not voting is worse then voting for the other side.

  • 2. Robin  |  March 9, 2012 at 9:21 am

    I am EXTREMELY happy with Obama. I figured when he got elected:
    1st term: get rid of Don't Ask Don't Tell.
    2nd term: get rid of DOMA.

    He has delivered on the first one, and the second one is in the works.

  • 3. Robin  |  March 9, 2012 at 9:28 am

    One more thing of great importance:
    Obama has shown the country how we should approach LGBT issues. He says it is about fairness and equality. He participated in "It Gets Better." When you have someone in the White House leading by example, it is very powerful to the rest of the country. If a Republican gets in, it becomes an issue about morality. Who cares is someone beats up a gay kid? Bullying in the schools: not a big deal. The President wields a great deal of power in framing the issue.

  • 4. Paul Stone  |  March 9, 2012 at 9:35 am

    Meh. It seems like a large percentage of Obama's LGBT "achievements" have come through not doing something… not defending DOMA (which I personally think could have been handled and presented a lot better), not defending other anti-gay cases. And during the DADT repeal debate, he repeatedly punted responsibility to Congress, telling them they needed to get it done.

    And yet… DOMA is still the law of the land; there is no federal protection for people who are fired for being gay; there is no immigration policy to allow foreign partners of LGBT americans move to the US; state legislatures across the country are working on banning any mention of homosexuality in schools; and meanwhile the president keeps evolving, and our opponents continue to be able to cite his statements in support of their anti-gay positions.

    To me, the trouble started as soon as he chose Rick Warren to lead a prayer at his inauguration, just after Warren had fought hard to pass Prop 8 in California. To me, that was a slap in the face to every gay American. I donated more to his campaign than I had ever donated to any political cause. At that moment, I felt like a chump for having believed his statement that he would be a "fierce advocate" for our rights.

    Shortly after that, speaking at a prayer breakfast with religious leaders, he said that he struggles every day with his acceptance of gay people.

    As far as I can tell, he's just another in a long line of politicians who is letting his chosen interpretation of his chosen religion stand in the way of assuring equal treatment under the law for all tax-paying American citizens.

    Undoubtedly, I'll vote for him in November because the alternatives are so heinous. But I won't be doing it enthusiastically as long as he is willing to let me be a second-class citizen. Just as Republicans will hold their nose and vote for Romney, I'll set aside my anger and resentment and vote for Obama.

  • 5. Derek Williams  |  March 9, 2012 at 9:38 am

    Who in their right mind would even consider voting for the Tea Party, or a single one of the GOP candidates?

    If we vote for a non-Obama candidate, we will get what they promise:
    1. Reinstate DADT
    2. Uphold DOMA
    3. Constitutional referendum to ban all same-sex marriage, including those in place

    No president in the history of our planet has ever delivered what the Obama administration has, yet we are a tiny minority of whom only 4% are prepared to self identify. Moreover, the President has to look after the other 96%.

    We can therefore just as easily be ignored or even silenced with impunity, as is happening right now in Russia. In St Petersburg the state government just passed a law (29/5 majority) that imprisons gay people for self disclosure, and conflates us with pedophiles. Massive international protest made no difference, because the Russian governments all know that as an unpopular and disliked minority, LGBT can be scapegoated for just about anything, as were Jews by the Nazi regime.

    The President will get the marriage thing done when politically feasible, but he cannot achieve this if not re-elected. It would be the sorest ingratitude to accept all the risks he has taken on our behalf and then tell him to go shove it, merely because we did not get 100% of our agenda in his first term.

    The President and the LGBT movement have common enemies: bigotry, inequality and prejudice. We should not let up the pressure, but we should also give credit where credit is due.

  • 6. Lymis  |  March 9, 2012 at 9:55 am

    For me it always comes down to whether the question is whether Obama taken in isolation is doing the best he can/the most he could/what he promised or whether the question is whether Obama is better for us than one of his opponents would be.

    And I don't think the questions should be mutually exclusive.

    We SHOULD be frustrated that he hasn't been the fierce advocate he promised to be. We should be frustrated at the pace of progress and the lackluster support by our allies. And we should say so. Often. Loudly.

    But that's independent of the question of whether that frustration should turn into a vote for Romney, or, God forbid, Santorum. That's so obvious as to be nearly ludicrous.

    What we do need to be taking seriously is local races and races for state and federal congress seats. Because those are the races where we often have a choice between a Democratic ally and someone who is "evolving" or even between a rabid Republican and a moderate one. If we can shift state and federal legislatures to more supportive people, then having the president support us won't seem like such a huge stretch.

  • 7. Derek Williams  |  March 9, 2012 at 9:55 am

    What do you imagine the result would be if the President were to declare LGBT equality as his #1 national priority, ahead of all other concerns, then issue an Executive Order to vacate DOMA, and a corollary decree that equal marriage be mandated for all 50 states of the Union?

    And how much more effective and permanent a measure do you consider it would have been for the President to bypass the consultative path he chose, and instead command DADT Repeal by Executive Order?

  • 8. fiona64  |  March 9, 2012 at 10:17 am

    Let us never forget this: http://www.calitics.com/showDiary.do?diaryId=6307

    Quote: And that is why I oppose the divisive and discriminatory efforts to amend the California Constitution, and similar efforts to amend the U.S. Constitution or those of other states

    It doesn't matter what his personal feelings are (and he knows that). What matters is that everyone be treated equally under the law … and that the law is not based on the sitting President's personal feelings.

  • 9. Bob  |  March 9, 2012 at 10:26 am

    If you want to know where Obama is headed re LGBT issues,, relisten to Hillary Clinton's speedh to the UN> Obama's direction is very clear,,,,,

    The forces against this are extreme, heavily funded and powerful,,, the republicans would be a disaster not only for your country but for the world, and not only in terms of LGBT rights,,, but all other issues as well..

    For the election I hope the LGBT community could join forces with others who would be hurt by reppublicans,,,, expecially women , the poor,, disabled,,, LGBT issues align with many others to create a movement to get Obama relected,,, time to reach out and join forces,,,,, please,,,

  • 10. chris hogan  |  March 9, 2012 at 10:31 am

    The sad reality is that Obama CANNOT support marriage equality without the serious risk of losing reelection because of it. It doesn't matter that a slim majority of people support it. The haters will out vote the supporters and the many homophobic blacks who voted for Obama will stay home in Novemeber. Stop bugging him now and wait a few more months people. HE CANNOT SAY WHAT HE FEELS until after the election. Or he can come out and support marriage NOW and we can enjoy four to eight years of Mitt Romney or Rick Santorum.

  • 11. Derek Williams  |  March 9, 2012 at 10:36 am

    While I can only speak for myself, I know for a fact that I am not alone in my feelings of indebtedness to you as an ally of the LGBT minority.

    On our own, at only 4% of the declared gay population, we do not have the chance of a snowball in Hell of getting even item 1 on our agenda taken seriously.

    Yet every day, I see heterosexual people in all walks of life, put themselves in harm's way for us.

    Please be reassured that for every person whose rhetoric connotes an apparent lack of due and proper acknowledgment (and I am not necessarily accusing the respondent you were replying to of this), there are a thousand more who, while we have no way of directly thanking you, our gratitude for what you have done to make our lives liveable is undiminished, nonetheless.

  • 12. Bob  |  March 9, 2012 at 10:39 am

    great quote Fiona,,,, and to further back up his stance,,, please don't forget the Queer Iranian refugees who have found safe haven in America,,,,, and more are on their way,, that wouldn't be happening under a republican president

  • 13. Phillip K  |  March 9, 2012 at 2:00 pm

    I'm curious who you plan on voting for then? I've yet to see any support for equality from any of the GOP candidates.

  • 14. Californiaesque  |  March 9, 2012 at 2:17 pm

    Thank you Derek! My passionate support for marriage equality finally gave me the courage to leave my bigot of an ex-husband. I am indebted, too.

  • 15. kate  |  March 9, 2012 at 2:31 pm

    Derek, that is perfectly said. I wish that I had written it myself.

  • 16. karen in kalifornia  |  March 9, 2012 at 2:54 pm

    I only vote for candidates who support equality. At this point, despite support from above commenters, Obama does not get my vote. There it is. I don't care about strategy. I don't care about timeliness (whatever that means). Because the time is now to evolve already.

  • 17. Martin Pal  |  March 9, 2012 at 3:02 pm

    Karen in Kalifornia’s comment is one of tunnel vision and yet one hears it a lot.

    A person has to vote for someone who is heading in the direction you want to get to. You can’t set up rigid goals and if they don’t adhere to your rigidity just give up. The very fact that, quoting the article, ” none of the Republican candidates responded to the Blade inquiry” should tell you what direction you’ll be going in if you don’t vote for the person or people who are, even at the least, giving you a signal in the right direction.

    If you’re voting for someone who’s driving in the direction you want to go and your vote is the gas, you can’t stop putting the gas in the car because the destination wasn’t reached on your own time schedule. What’s the alternative? Put gas in the car of someone else going in the opposite direction? Or just not participating?

    Remember–when the Republicans say they want to take this country back, they mean back to the 1950’s. If you vote for that or don’t vote for the alternatives, enjoy the ride.

  • 18. Mark M. (Seattle)  |  March 9, 2012 at 3:26 pm

    So you would rather waste your vote or not be counted at all? How is that furthering our fight for equality?

  • 19. DaveP  |  March 9, 2012 at 3:28 pm

    Exactly. If nothing else, a vote for Obama is a vote to PREVENT the election of the extremely anti-gay Republican candidate who will be running against him. It's really simple. It's just another action to take in support of our equal rights, like we all do so many times in various ways. I really do not understand how someone who wants equal rights for LGBTs would choose to do something that helps our opponents get elected, which is what we are doing if we 'boycott' the election. I mean, do we want our equal rights or not?

  • 20. kate  |  March 9, 2012 at 3:52 pm

    Santorum and Romney are delighted to hear this.

  • 21. karen in kalifornia  |  March 9, 2012 at 4:00 pm

    Dear Philip, Dave, and Mark,
    In 2008 I voted Green Party. Peace and Freedom also here in California supports full equality in the
    party platforms and candidates campaign on that platform.

    I have not yet been able to reason out why the knee jerk reaction is that someone like me would vote Republican when it is shared that one is not voting Obama. Why do you all come to that conclusion?
    Or come to the conclusion that I would be sitting out the election. I have not missed an election since I could vote back in 1974. Why do you all come to this conclusion that not voting for Obama means not voting? Here in California I have my proequality state and federal representatives to vote for. They are wonderful.
    No way in burning hell would I vote for a Republican. At this point I would not be likely to vote for a Republican at any election level even if they personally were pro equality because their party is so wrong on all issue I fell strongly about.

    No voter's remorse here. And ease up on the kneejerk attack. I am so voting….just not for a non-equality candidate.

  • 22. Chris in Lathrop  |  March 9, 2012 at 4:40 pm

    Karen, you're not alone! I was raised in a Democrat family that believes that voting for a third party candidate is the same as voting for a Republican. I'm sure that there are Republican families that believe voting for, say, a Libertarian candidate is the same as voting for a Democrat. It's absurd. I can't find it now, but I recall a quote to the effect of voting your hopes, not your fears.

    That's why I, also, vote Green. Obama has turned out better than I feared, even considering some of the forgotten and delayed promises. I'm saddened and dismayed it has taken the Democrats so long to even consider making LGBT rights a party priority. I feel that the Democrats have gotten way too reliant upon corporate donations in their desperation to keep up with the Republican money machine and have diluted their roots and accountability to this country's liberal citizens. I have even worked towards getting corporate money out of politics altogether, to no avail. At my core, I believe the Greens are the most progressive, and thus I will continue to vote Green, fearmongers or no.

  • 23. John  |  March 9, 2012 at 4:57 pm

    Shows what kind of IDIOT you are! I don't care if anyone things I am being mean. You don't about anything because you are DUMB! Wake up! Ever heard of the saying Keep your friends close, and your enemies closer?

  • 24. John  |  March 9, 2012 at 4:59 pm

    Brainless……

  • 25. John  |  March 9, 2012 at 5:03 pm

    Another idiot…..Doesn't surprise me.

  • 26. Adam Bink  |  March 9, 2012 at 5:25 pm

    Cut the name-calling or I will have to moderate comments. Thanks.

  • 27. Rich  |  March 9, 2012 at 7:19 pm

    Thanks Adam for the wake up. Name calling is not necessary. We all want the same thing: a President who will support us and take the steps to insure and support our equality both in our general lives and in marriage. Please remember, we do this for ourselves, of course, but we do it, also, for the millions of gay youth who look to us to make voting decisions that will open opportunities for them to actually realize the fruits of our labor. It is my absolute conviction that Barack Obama is the man to do this. His convictions for equality are strong and his sense of timing impeccable. Look at the big picture of his first 4 years….who can doubt the wisdom of his maneuvers?

  • 28. Straight Dave  |  March 9, 2012 at 7:32 pm

    @Fiona
    I can understand your resentment at feeling unappreciated, but I read the context of the "lackluster support by our allies" comment as referring to politicians, since it was about the pace of progress in changing the laws. As another ally, I never thought this was directed at us ordinary people.

  • 29. Juan  |  March 9, 2012 at 8:37 pm

    I cannot become a single issue voter. Yes President Obama and many in congress have fulfilled many victories when it comes to "gay rights". But I cannot support a President who has trampled the constitution when it comes to civil liberties and a irresponsible fiscal & foreign policy.

  • 30. MightyAcorn  |  March 9, 2012 at 8:52 pm

    Look people: you don't get to vote for someone you *like.* You get to vote for the person who WILL DO THE LEAST DAMAGE.

    If you don't vote for that person–in this case, President Obama–you are making it EASIER for someone else, an EXTREMELY DAMAGING someone els, to get into office. You think things will get better for LGBTs with Romney (or, heaven forfend, Santorum!) in office? Look what happened with the extremely close race in Bush v. Gore–do you think eligible voters who just couldn't bring themselves to vote for Gore had an impact on that election? Yes they did. We're still paying for their "protest votes" with wars and debt we may well have avoided if the election turned out differently.

    I've said it before here and I'll say it again: the reason our country's in the mess it is today is because fewer than half the eligible voters actually VOTE. When an entire population holds its politicians' feet to the fire, the quality of life in that country changes. Here it's shameful what a small percentage of voters it takes to get elected, hence the Tea Party "sweep" into Congress with a tiny minority of the population supporting them. Sorry, but there's no such thing as "sitting out an election" and not having an impact on that election. That's how these fringers get in, because moderates and progressives just can't be bothered.

    Grown-ups understand that sometimes participating in the democratic process is stinky business. You may have to hold your nose to do it, but rest assured our opponents will be voting the party line and if we don't meet them with equal force we'll lose the Senate and the Presidency. You want that on your head? You'll have yourself to blame (and a lot of other people will probably join in, fyi.)

    I think Obama's trying to play both sides of the religious fence in order to maintain voter support and he's doing it pretty well. I also appreciate his stated dedication to civility. In case you hadn't noticed, no one else seems to be making that part of their platform.

    And perhaps someone would like to create a chart showing what Bush Jr. did for LGBTs in his eight years in office–nothing–compared to what Obama has done in the past four…including refusing to defend against lawsuits pressed to secure equal rights. We need him to keep going.

    You might also think about the impact your non-vote will have on the Supreme Court. The Court's already got a frail balance…you think if one of the justices steps down in the next few years we'll get a Romney or Santorum nominee like Sotomayor, someone likely to support us? And you'd risk that because Obama's not moving fast enough for you? Really?

    If Gore had won the election, we'd mostly likely have had a Supreme Court RIGHT NOW that would overturn DOMA in a heartbeat. Instead we got Bushites like Roberts and Alito, which will screw civil rights progress for decades. Think about the lasting impact of your not-vote on our rights before you stick your chin out with pride at how you showed 'em. </rant> <for now>

  • 31. DaveP  |  March 9, 2012 at 9:46 pm

    Hi Karen,

    It's really just math and strategy. For example, if the Republican candidate gets 10 million votes, and Obama gets 9,999,999 votes, and the Green Party candidate gets 500 votes from people who strongly prefer Obama's position on the issues over that of the Republican candidate but were disappointed in Obama's performance, THIS WILL MEAN THE REPUBLICANS WIN even though more people prefer Obama's position over the Republicans. Please reconsider and DO NOT let the Republicans win by diluting votes that can prevent them from winning. It would be a disaster for anyone who is still struggling to have their equal rights recognized.

  • 32. Bob  |  March 9, 2012 at 10:13 pm

    I wanted to press the thumbs up on that a zillion times,, well said MightyAcorn wake up America!!!!!!

  • 33. Mark M. (Seattle)  |  March 9, 2012 at 10:44 pm

    @ Karen
    I for one never said you would be voting Republican…I actually assumed you would do as you say you will and vote 'other' I see this as tossing away your vote on a person who can not win, and therefore can do nothing to further the cause of equality. It is for all intense and purposes throwing your vote away, or just not voting at all. But this is just my opinion. I would hope some day we could get away from a two party system, and actually really truly elect those that would do the best job.
    Keep the faith Karen :-)

  • 34. Mark M. (Seattle)  |  March 9, 2012 at 10:46 pm

    Exactly !!!!!!

  • 35. Chris in Lathrop  |  March 9, 2012 at 11:03 pm

    The electoral college is not a pure popularity contest. And I happen to prefer the Green Party position to that of both major parties. Our political institution is not a bipolar one; there are an array of philosophies at work, and to diminish one of those philosophies over any single issue is a practice I shudder to find here of all places.

  • 36. Michael  |  March 10, 2012 at 2:02 am

    I'm so tired of hearing about this. I could not care less whether Obama supports marriage equality or not. If he does, he won't say it till his second term. And that's just fine with me. Let's work on advancing equality and not this one man's public pronouncements.

  • 37. Sheryl_Carver  |  March 10, 2012 at 7:05 am

    Fiona:

    I obviously don't know what Lymis intended, but given the context, I'm guessing the phrase was supposed to be something like "lackluster support by our SUPPOSED allies."

    You & all the other heterosexual friends & true allies are a HUGE reason we are making progress. Theoretically, all minority groups would get protection & civil rights just because that's how our government is supposed to work. We all know, however, that without the support & activism of a lot of very brave & dedicated people in the majority group, it would not happen. It's happening now because of the courage & actions of folks like you who are willing to pay the price to stand up for what is right.

    I know I'm not alone is saying, shouting, "THANK YOU!"

    Very sincerely,
    Sheryl

  • 38. Sheryl_Carver  |  March 10, 2012 at 7:08 am

    Let's keep this a discussion, John. Stop the insults.

  • 39. Kate  |  March 10, 2012 at 7:46 am

    NOMbie troll…………..

  • 40. Lymis  |  March 10, 2012 at 8:23 am

    I certainly never intended my comment to be a statement that there is nobody out there doing heroic things on our behalf, nor that it applied to all our allies.

    It was in response to the idea that we're supposed to be offended by the lack of progress shown by the Obama administration, and by extension, the rest of our elected Democrats, possibly enough that we might choose not to vote Democrat this November. That would be tragic.

    If you took my comment as personally directed at you, or as a general statement that we have no real allies, that was most certainly not my intention. Anyone who does anything on our behalf has my heartfelt thanks.

  • 41. Lymis  |  March 10, 2012 at 8:26 am

    Can you at least vote against someone who clearly and openly vows to make things worse?

  • 42. karen in kalifornia  |  March 10, 2012 at 8:35 am

    As Chris points out….the President is not elected by popular vote (otherwise Gore would have been President and I would be a happier camper than I am now with the Democrat in the White House).
    Here in California, Obama IS going to win the electoral votes. I still maintain my right to vote for my beliefs…..Green Party is a better non-corpporate, pro-equality party than mainstream Democratic Party is. That's were I'mm at. It is not throwing away a vote, it is voting for the type of government I want.

    I'll repeat in case you and others didn't comprehend what I wrote….I vote for local Democratic state pro-equality candidates….and they win. I vote for my Democratic Congressional candidate and he has won over and over…he is part of the LGBT Congressional Caucus and has co-sponorsed endless pro-LGBT bills in Congress, Rep. Brad Sherman.

    I can't say what my thoughts would be if I lived in one of the many non-gay friendly states because I have lived all my life in California.

  • 43. karen in kalifornia  |  March 10, 2012 at 8:36 am

    Mark, see above. Not throwing away my vote.
    Just wondering, can you name your pro-equality state and federal representatives without looking them up?

  • 44. chris hogan  |  March 10, 2012 at 9:33 am

    I am now a true believer in Obama. At first I was frustrated with his apparant lack of action, but now I know how he works. He works behind the scenes to set the stage for equality while forcing us to actually get involved and lobby congress (like we should have done with Bill Clinton). By doing this, we give him the cover he needs to get the job done. He may not come out and say he supports marriage equality yet, but the now inevitable death of DOMA is in no small part the result of him working behind the scenes, with the repal of DADT the mortal blow. Past fights have taught us that this is the best way to take on the anti-gay machine because they don't see him coming. Remember when everyone thought DADT repeal was dead? Then two weeks later he signed it into law. I don't care how they get it done, just that THEY GET IT DONE. And the haters now hate Obama more than any other president including Clinton, which is exactly how it should be. And when Obama comes out for marriage equality in his second term, there will be no stopping it.

  • 45. chris hogan  |  March 10, 2012 at 9:34 am

    I Obama is reelected, then in 2016 marriage equality will be so accepted that even if a Republican wins they will not even try to oppose it. By this time I see several current haters even changing their tune like George Wallace did on segregation. Maybe Maggie Gallagher will be asking us for advice on window treatments and chairing a local PFLAG, you never know.

  • 46. Juan  |  March 10, 2012 at 9:48 am

    The only persons I support for president would be Ron Paul and Gary Johnson. I personally prefer Gary Johnson.
    But I have to say I'm not rather surprised by the negative votes on my comment. Unfortunately many bright people in this country and including in this site are held in this left/right paradigm . Democrats aren't saints just as many republicans ; including Obama. Many democrat candidates and those in currently office just use the gay vote to get elected but personally doesn't care about LGBT issues.
    But of course I understand why many support Obama when it comes to these issues.

  • 47. Bob  |  March 10, 2012 at 10:53 am

    great insight Chris, into how Obama works,,, behind the scenes,,, he sets the stage,,, he has a vision, which aligns with everything I want the world to become,,,, His vision goes over most peoples heads because it is so global,,,, and on the home front he leads, tells people where he is heading, like DADT,, the people had to do the heavy lifting,,,,, his vision is bending the arc of justice in the right direction,,,

    it is an ugly politics,,, that the republicans can hate on him so much stirring up fear, not because Obama has done anything bad,,,, but just so they could win ,,,

    If the Republicans win Obama will reflect back on the day he included LGBT"S in the language of the United Nations Human Rights Campaign,,,, and directed Hillary to gvve that speech to the word.

    The greatest threat to Americans is the Vatican,, and the recent speech from the Pope against American values

  • 48. MightyAcorn  |  March 10, 2012 at 12:22 pm

    Except we don't have proportional government, where such votes wouldn't dilute those of the electable candidates. I applaud your involvement in our process and the fact that you've thought about your position; however, until we have a system that supports multiple parties the reality is your vote endangers the liberals, moderates, and progressives currently in office.

    That said, I blame those who are eligible who don't register and don't vote–they are the real problem and the reason our system is so messed up.

    I was a registered Green once too so I understand the notion of "pure voting" for progressive values, but this election I'll vote for Obama so we can continue to unravel DOMA, since there's no other viable candidate who'll do that. I also keep voter registration forms in my car and (as you can tell) nag people about voting a lot. I encourage you all to do the same.

  • 49. pgbach  |  March 10, 2012 at 2:59 pm

    Very simple: voting green = George W Bush… MightyAcorn tells it like it is…

  • 50. Eric  |  March 10, 2012 at 7:45 pm

    A Congress that had the largest Democratic majorities in a generation.

  • 51. Mark M. (Seattle)  |  March 10, 2012 at 8:10 pm

    Actually I can…and am in contact with them often.
    Sorry I offended you with my opinion of your voting choice. You vote as you see fit….at least you're involved. :-)

  • 52. Str8Grandmother  |  March 11, 2012 at 7:51 am

    I am sick of the whole political process. I am sick of the voting and referendums, and NOM, and taking people out of office, and putting people into office, and all the wasteful millions that are spent on both sides, just sick and tired of the whole thing, My hopes are with our Courts.

  • 53. Bob  |  March 11, 2012 at 3:36 pm

    no matter how sick you are,,, you still got to vote!!!!!!!

  • 54. fiona64  |  March 12, 2012 at 10:19 am

    Obvious troll is obvious …

  • 55. fiona64  |  March 12, 2012 at 10:20 am

    Such a constructive addition to the conversation …

  • 56. fiona4  |  March 12, 2012 at 10:21 am

    Heh. Ron Paul is a known racist, homophobe and misogynist. He would most definitely make things worse.

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