Analysis of the Obama speech in the traditional media, courtesy of AMERICAblog

While we know someone at the White House (and since John Harwood works for both NBC and the New York Times, it probably wasn’t some low-level staffer) spent part of the weekend dissing progressive activists and bloggers, I found it interesting that many in the traditional media used blogs as sources for their reporting on the President’s big gay speech.

For example, yesterday, when I started reading the Washington Post, right there, with prominent placement on page 3 was a quote from none other than John Aravosis:

Many gay rights activists are disappointed that Obama has not moved forward on two major issues: ending the military’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy, under which gay soldiers can be discharged for their sexual orientation; and his failure to work toward ending the Defense of Marriage Act.

“As someone who supported Barack Obama early on during the primaries, and raised nearly $50,000 for him during the campaign, it gives me no pleasure to burst the pink champagne bubbles of hope,” John Aravosis, a gay rights activist and popular blogger, wrote in the Huffington Post. “But President Obama’s track record on keeping his gay promises has been fairly abominable.”

John didn’t talk to the Post reporter directly. No, the reporter found the quote in a blog post. That article ended up in a key place in the Post (page 3 is huge). People in DC read the Post (at least on Sunday.) I had at least 10 people mention the article to me yesterday before noon.

Then, I noticed that another of John’s posts was included in a piece by Jake Tapper from ABC News:

Of this, John Aravosis, the editor of, wrote, “The president claimed that he’s for treating gay couples just like married couples. Then why is he against letting gay couples marry?” He concluded, “All in all, the evening was a disappointment, but not unexpected. President Obama doesn’t do controversy, and we, my friends, are controversy. So, the bad blood between this administration and the gay community will remain, and continue to worsen. It’s unfortunate, but at some point you have to have enough dignity to say enough is enough. The Obama administration doesn’t respect our community, and doesn’t respect the seriousness of our cause. It’s our job to hold them accountable. And we will.”

As Jake notes, he got that excerpt from

I also saw this blurb at

But while the speech was applauded in the hall, reaction outside of it was was harsher, with many prominent gay voices concerned by the president’s lack of specifics.

Prominent gay blogger John Aravosis, in a post titled “Where’s the Beef?”, wrote that “Obama repeated his campaign promises. That was it.”

Funny thing, isn’t it? To someone at the White House, bloggers, gay protesters, and progressive Democrats are easy to dismiss (and they’ve dismissed us before – “left of the left” anyone?). But, what John Aravosis wrote about the President’s speech extended far beyond the readers of this site. I just find that interesting.

On October 27, 2010, Joe was one of five bloggers who interviewed President Obama. Joe is a DC-based political consultant with over twenty-five years of experience at both the state and federal level. Joe has managed political operations and legislative efforts for both candidates and issues-based organizations. For seven years, he was the Director of State Legislation at Handgun Control, Inc. He served as that organization's first Political Director during the 2000 cycle. Joe is a graduate of the University of Maine School of Law. In addition, he has a Masters in Public Administration from Lehigh University and received his B.A. from the University of New Hampshire. Joe also has a fun dog, Petey, a worthy successor to Boomer, who got Joe through eight years of Bush and Cheney. Joe likes to think he is a world class athlete having finished the 2005 Chicago Marathon in the time of 4:10. He has completed six other marathons as well -- and is still determined to break the four hour mark.

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