Well, it seems now that Obama's doing a little backpedaling on the gay marriage thing. After having tripped up the other day by trying to woo evangelicals with talk about faith-based programs at the same time it came out that he sent a letter opposing the marriage amendment in California, his spokesperson is in full spin-mode. From the NY Times :
Mr. Obama made his position public in a letter he sent last week to the Alice B. Toklas L.G.B.T. Democratic Club, a San Francisco gay rights group.
"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," wrote Mr. Obama, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee.
Well, that's pretty clear. We can disagree, but at least we know where he stands, right? Uh-huh. Read on.
But his campaign said that Mr. Obama's opposition to the initiative, which will appear on the state's November ballot, did not signal a change in position. He remains opposed to same-sex marriage, but supports civil unions and domestic partnerships.
Ben LaBolt, a spokesman for the campaign, said that Mr. Obama took the stance because "as we have seen in some states, enshrining a definition of marriage into the constitution can allow states to roll back the civil rights and benefits that are provided in domestic partnerships and civil unions."
So he's opposed to same-sex marriage, but opposes making keeping it against the law. Opposing a state being able to keep it's current definition of marriage from being redefined by a one vote court majority.
Perhaps then Obama, or his spokesman, would be so kind as to provide some proposed text of a traditional marriage law that wouldn't "roll back civil rights", whatever that means.
The truth is that he wants to play that cagey liberal game of being for something without having to admit your for it. Meaning he'll say he's "for" gay civil unions/domestic partnerships which have all the same rights and benefits of marriage...so long as we don't call it a "marriage" yet and upset some of those "bitter" middle class voters who's votes he'll need in a few swing states in the American heartland.
He's hoping that they don't catch on before Election Day.