On October 27, 2010, I asked the President Obama what his position was on same-sex marriage. He told me that his position was evolving. Today, Barack Obama’s evolution on marriage equality is complete.
Obama has told ABC News that “same sex marriage should be legal…. I think same-sex couples should be able to get married.” (ABC has the video.)
OBAMA: I have to tell you that over the course of several years as I have talked to friends and family and neighbors when I think about members of my own staff who are in incredibly committed monogamous relationships, same-sex relationships, who are raising kids together, when I think about those soldiers or airmen or marines or sailors who are out there fighting on my behalf and yet feel constrained, even now that Don’t Ask Don’t Tell is gone, because they are not able to commit themselves in a marriage, at a certain point I’ve just concluded that for me personally it is important for me to go ahead and affirm that I think same sex couples should be able to get married.
Obama became the first President of the United States to support marriage equality. It’s a very welcome development. As you know, the President first announced that he was evolving during our interview on October 27, 2010. In response to my question, the President said:
I think it’s a fair question to ask. I think that — I am a strong supporter of civil unions. As you say, I have been to this point unwilling to sign on to same-sex marriage primarily because of my understandings of the traditional definitions of marriage. But I also think you’re right that attitudes evolve, including mine. And I think that it is an issue that I wrestle with and think about because I have a whole host of friends who are in gay partnerships. I have staff members who are in committed, monogamous relationships, who are raising children, who are wonderful parents. And I care about them deeply. And so while I’m not prepared to reverse myself here, sitting in the Roosevelt Room at 3:30 in the afternoon, I think it’s fair to say that it’s something that I think a lot about. That’s probably the best you’ll do out of me today.
I told the President that if our relationships weren’t treated like everyone else’s, we aren’t equal. Today, he acknowledged that we are.
|Five progressive bloggers interview President Obama in October, 2010.|
Now, this doesn’t change any law or over rule any constitutional amendment. It’s symbolic. But, it certainly feels different to know that, for the first time, our President thinks our relationships are equal.
During our interview, the President said, “The one thing I will say today is I think it’s pretty clear where the trendlines are going.” Now, he’s with the trend. And, our talk concluded:
Q The arc of history. THE PRESIDENT: The arc of history.
Yep. The arc of history. And, I’m honored to have played a small role in this. (h/t to ThinkProgress for the transcript of today’s interview.)
NOTE FROM JOHN: A few points. First, this is major news and these aren’t “just words.” When the President of the United States makes a statement about an issue this big, the words have impact. They can impact court cases around the country, and just as importantly, people’s attitudes. Those attitudes matter at the ballot box and in the schoolyard. The President’s opinion matter. This is an important day for gays and lesbians, our allies, and for all Americans who believe that our country stands for more than cheap political slogans. Today we showed that it does.