President Obama has come out in favor of gay marriage.
The president had previously held what he called an “evolving” position on marriage equality. While talking to ABC’s Robin Roberts, he said the hardworking families around him influenced him, as did his daughters’ views on the matter.
Others might argue different reasons for the president’s announcement. His support followed similar comments from Vice President Joe Biden and Education Secretary Arne Duncan—and a contentious vote in North Carolina that would constitutionally ban same-sex marriage. The White House said that while Obama planned to announce his support before the Democratic Convention, the building media attention forced his hand.
Other states like Maryland will be considering bans on gay marriage in the coming months. Obama said that states should ultimately be allowed to decide the issue— disappointing some on the left who see this as a federal civil rights matter.
How will the issue impact the election? Overall, Obama’s public support for gay marriage is likely to energize his liberal base, but it may cost him votes among more socially conservative Latinos and Blacks in critical swing-states.
Video produced by Krishnan Vasuvedan.