Interesting how today, both gay conservatives and leftists see through President Obama’s pander yesterday on gay marriage, coming as it did following a week when the Democrats was facing questions for his stand on gay marriage.
The president may claim that Vice President Biden’s recent comments on gay marriage forced the timing of the announcement, but the real question is why he didn’t announce his change of heart when it could have made a difference, especially given, as Ed Morrissey reports that, in his interview yesterday, Obama claimed “he’d made up his mind to change his position some time ago“:
And for all of those who cheered this flip-flop, here’s a question: wouldn’t it have been more effective in North Carolina had Obama made this announcement before Amendment One went to the polls? According to Obama himself, he’d already changed position on same-sex marriage. An announcement last week or the week before that, with a personal plea to African-American voters, might have made a difference. Instead, Obama hid, the White House fibbed, and Amendment One won easily in a state that Obama carried in 2008. Regardless of whatever else this might be called, leadership isn’t among the terms that come to mind.
Ad the Yahoo! online survey indicates, it does seem most people see through the president’s pandering move, with more than two-thirds of respondents saying they see his policy shift as based on campaign politics.
This may help rally the base and generate some more campaign cash, but could well end up being a net negative for the president, not on the merits of the issue, but on his approach. Expect more people to realize Obama is just another politician for whom political calculation matters more than principle.
UPDATE: Seems Obama consulted his political advisors to reach the decision he announced yesterday:
In his ABC interview, the president pretended that his much touted “evolution” had now led him, ineluctably, to speak out now, today; he simply could longer stay silent. ABC let him off the hook, but this is not a credible account. In March, the Washington Post was reportingthe debate among his advisers on whether the issue would help or hurt the reelection campaign and what, therefore, Obama should say: “Obama’s top political advisers have held serious discussions with leading Democrats about the upsides and downsides of coming out for gay marriage before the fall election.”
The same advisers told the Post that Obama would make the decision based on his gut, but that is an insulting way to refer to the vice president. There is no evidence that Obama planned to speak until Joe Biden said last weekend that he was for gay “marriage” and forced the issue.