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The gay fortnight

On two successive days last week, I posted about wanting to blog at a slower pace and focus on other things.  I have not yet had time to find that focus.

As per the second post, however, I really did the wrong week for slow blogging.  Since heading up to the Bay Area at the end of last month and determining to focus on other things, it has very much been the gay fortnight, first with a man (unfortunately) highly regarded in the gay community delivering a mean-spirited diatribe against Christians.  This was not that man’s first foray into nasty rhetoric — or juvenile antics (and he’s no longer in secondary school).

Then came the Grenell matter where the Romney campaign awkwardly handled a situation which appeared to have become delicate.  I will have a bit more to say on this, hopefully later this afternoon, but that post (on the awkward way the Romney campaign handled the matter) got delayed by the president’s (successful) ploy to raise campaign cash from the gay community.

If the president’s shift on gay marriage were sincere, wouldn’t he have made a stronger case for expanding the definition of marriage to include same-sex couples, telling his fellow citizens why he believes this expansion to be a good thing for the individual couples — and for society at large?

Will try to keep up a steady blogging pace, but do hope you understand if I slow it down a bit for a few days.

Still believe the president’s shift on same-sex marriage is sincere?

Hugh Hewitt’s observation this morning about possible “trouble in Obamaville” provides another data point suggesting otherwise.  “The president’s cash haul in April”, he observes “was down from that in March, and The Hill’s report has this note of anxiety within it:

The Obama campaign is making a concerted effort to boost the number of small donations, as its affiliated super-PACs have not been able to compete with the big donations from wealthy individuals contributing to super-PAC’s affiliated with presumptive GOP nominee Mitt Romney.

As I wrote last June, “Face it, gay Democrats, he’s just after you for your money

Will Obama’s stand on gay marriage hurt him this fall?

Please note that I include this post in random thoughts because I am not entirely sure how answer to the question I pose in the title.  Until last night, I thought that Obama’s recent shift on gay marriage wouldn’t make any difference in the fall, save to increase his fundraising. Then, I got a link to this video last night in my e-mail, watched it and wondered:

Victor Davis Hanson’s read on the president’s supposed shift also caused me to question my initial interpretation:

The flip-flop on gay marriage, of course, did not win Obama a single vote, just plenty of one-percenters’ money. More injurious to his cause was his idiotic refrain about his “evolving” views. No one believed that yarn: fifteen years ago he was for gay marriage when it was smart politically for him to be so, and then he revolved to “no” when it was not. All that happened this week was that clueless Joe Biden jumped the gun. Obama with a wink and nod had privately assured rich gays, as he had Putin, that after his reelection he would give them what was wanted, but could not quite yet, given his need to hoodwink the clingers to get reelected. I think most voters understood that con as emblematic of this presidency.

Via Instapundit.  Where it hurts the most is not the merits of the issue, but that people will see the re-positioning as patently political.  Not just that, he looks out of touch, having announced his shift the day after North Carolina voters overwhelmingly rejected state recognition of same-sex marriage.  It’s almost as if he were thumbing his nose at the citizens in a state that he won in 2008–and is trying to hold again this year.

Now, I wish that gay marriage were not, to borrow Mitt Romney’s expression, “a hot political issue dividing our nation.”  And wish support of state recognition of same-sex unions would not hurt a candidate at the polls.  And maybe, under normal circumstances, it wouldn’t. (more…)

Will Obama’s gay marriage pander hurt him politically?

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: (more…)

Gay marriage more popular than Obama

Maybe Obama’s shift on gay marriage was about more than money.  On our Facebook page, our reader Chad wondered if President Obama “decided to come out in favor of SSM now because he knows it’s more popular than he is.”  He’s got a point.

Today’s Gallup tracking point shows the president’s approval has edged up to 48:

And the latest Gallup poll shows 50% of Americans think gay marriages should be recognized as valid by the law: (more…)

Obama hauls in campaign cash from trusting gays

Barack Obama knows how to play gay Democrats like a fiddle.  They’re just so eager to embrace the Democratic Party that one shout out, one wink, one nod is all it takes for them to think he loves them.  They’re so smitten with the captain of the football team that he knows all he needs do to earn their affection is to make it appear that they might have a chance with him.

But, as I wrote nearly a year ago, face it, guys and gals, “he’s just after you for your money.”

Over at the Washington Free Beacon, the staff take note of an interesting coincidence:

President Obama announced his support for same-sex marriage less [sic] than 48 hours after the Washington Post reported that prominent political donors were threatening to withhold donations over the president’s position on gay rights. . . .

Left-wing blogger Greg Sargent reported on Monday that “leading gay and progressive donors” were angry with Obama over his increasingly convoluted position on gay rights and same-sex marriage, and were refusing to donate any more money to Priorities USA, the pro-Obama Super PAC.

Emphasis added.  And sure enough, just after he blows a kiss in their direction, gay Democrats are back to swooning.  According to Zeke Miller on BuzzFeed, “in the first 90 minutes after the news broke Wednesday, the campaign received $1 million in spontaneous contributions” (via Joshuapundit).

And all this for a kiss.  And there’s still no ring in sight.  No indication what the president’s change of heart will change in the legislative/policy sphere.

When they had a majority, House Democrats never voted on repealing DOMA, yet now they’re campaigning on Obama’s support of same-sex marriage

On its website, The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) bills itself as “the official campaign arm of the Democrats in the House.”  And last night via a friend’s Facebook link, I learned that this outfit was garnering signatures in support of the president’s new stand on gay marriage:

That takes some cheek. Since a Republican Congress passed the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) in 1996, Democrats have controlled the House for four years, from January 3, 2007 until January 5, 2011.  Not once did then-Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) hold a vote on repealing that legislation.  Not once did she hold a vote on giving benefits to the same-sex domestic partners of federal employees.

These Democrats now praise Obama’s support of same-sex marriage, yet, when they had a chance to act on the issue they did nothing.

Something tells me that once the DCCC gets your name, they’re going to be hitting you up for campaign contributions.  Maybe this thing is all about fundraising after all.

Obama won’t show us any legislation on gay marriage:
(still gay Democrats are giddy about his words on gay marriage)

At 0:49 below, Audrey Hepburn demonstrates how gay Americans should have responded to President Obama’s statement on gay marriage yesterday:

Like everything with Obama, all we get is “words, words, words.”

This is not just a gay conservative talking.  Several voices on the left have found that there’s not much there there in the president’s sudden shift on same-sex marriage.  At the Gawker, John Cook calls the statement a “cowardly cop-out”:  “it seems fairly clear from the network’s coverage that his announcement amounts to much less than meets the eye. He now believes that gay couples should be able to marry.

At the far left magazine Mother Jones, Adam Serwer reports that his colleague . . .

. . . David Corn spoke with an administration source and asked whether the president recognized gay marriage as a right. The official replied, “He has always said that it is a state issue, and he’s not suggesting changing that. He did not support the North Carolina amendment, but he’s not saying he will bring up a piece of federal legislation on gay marriage. This is how he feels himself about the issue, and he leaves it to the states.”

Emphasis added.  He’s not bringing up legislation?!?  And all my left-leaning gay friends on Facebook are so giddy about the statement; Obama’s just leaving it to the states.

Shouldn’t they be insisting that he show us he loves us by putting some political capital on the line and backing legislation to make federal recognition of gay relationships a reality?

He’s like the guy who tells his beloved how much he loves her, tells her wants to get married, but refuses to buy a ring or set a date.

Log Cabin rebukes Obama on gay marriage statement

R. Clarke Cooper, Log Cabin Executive Director has not joined the heads of other D.C.-based gay organizations in praising the president for putting forward the same position yesterday as Dick Cheney offered twelve years ago:

Log Cabin Republicans appreciate that President Obama has finally come in line with leaders like Vice President Dick Cheney on this issue, but LGBT Americans are right to be angry that this calculated announcement comes too late to be of any use to the people of North Carolina, or any of the other states that have addressed this issue on his watch. This administration has manipulated LGBT families for political gain as much as anybody, and after his campaign’s ridiculous contortions to deny support for marriage equality this week he does not deserve praise for an announcement that comes a day late and a dollar short.

Some gay leaders see this move for what it is, a “calculated announcement” following “his campaign’s ridiculous contortions.”  Kudos, Clarke for your solid statment. Something’s changed at Log Cabin.  Wonder why that could be.

Obama’s cynical gay marriage move:
Trying to sell the Brooklyn Bridge to his gay supporters

Judging from my Facebook feed and anecdotal evidence from friends, many gay people today are celebrating their imminent procurement of the Brooklyn Bridge.  Expect them to soon increase their down payment toward that celebrated span.

This swoon, to borrow an expression from Jennifer Rubin, “will take up the political oxygen for a while.”  What exactly will this accomplish save to give gay Democrats, already eager to support Obama, a reason to really ’round the Democrat?  Will Obama do what he didn’t do when his party had majorities in both houses of Congress, work the phones and otherwise buttonhole legislators to overturn the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) — as LBJ did in 1964 on behalf of the Civil Rights Act?

Why did he wait until after North Carolina voters passed Amendment One to issue his statement?  Today’s comments, quips Christopher R. Barron, Chief Strategist and Co-Founder of GOProud are “cold comfort to the gay couples in North Carolina.”  Heck, he didn’t even cut a radio or TV ad opposing the ballot measure.

He even canceled a scheduled visit to the Tarheel State on primary day.

Wonder if this sudden change of heart had something to do with money.  A few weeks ago, Ed Morrissey noted that “Obama remains significantly off of his own 2008 pace of fundraising, and way under the Democratic donation performance of that cycle.”  And as Dan Eggen reports in the Washington Post:

Many of Obama’s key financial supporters are gay–including finance director Rufus Gifford and Democratic National Committee treasurer Andrew Tobias–and the campaign has regularly held fundraisers focused on lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender donors.

A review of Obama’s top bundlers, who have brought in $500,000 or more for the campaign, shows that about one in six publicly identify themselves as gay.

It’s all about the money, friends.

Obama’s self-referential statement included no specifics about what he means to do. It, Philip Klein writes, “has no tangible policy impact — [Obama] still thinks the issue should be left to the states” — pretty much the same position Dick Cheney articulated in the Vice Presidential Debate twelve years ago. And I didn’t hear my gay friends singing hosannas then.

Some gay Democrats just need a token gesture to get all googly-eyed about a Democrat.  And the White House’s waffling words on gay marriage had caused much consternation among his gay supporters.  Simply put, the president moved to quiet a political firestorm in order to raise some much needed campaign cash. (more…)

Obama’s gay marriage decision: product of campaign politics?

Perhaps Barack Obama really did “evolve” on gay marriage. But, this poll on Yahoo! (no conservative platform that) suggests that those responding take a more, well, jaundiced view of the Democrat’s sudden change of heart:

As the above shot indicates, I’m one of those who think it was a cynical political decision — and that will be the subject of my next post.


Maybe he decided to come out in favor of SSM now because he knows it’s more popular than he is. Back in 2008, he probably had the same position he does now, but he probably thought he was politically better off showing nominal opposition then, and now, he needs to do something to shake things up since his reelection is so tenuous and he needs to make the election be something other than the economy.

Emphasis added. Heh.

Most Rapid Evolution In Mankind

Obama in 2004: ‘I Don’t Think Marriage Is a Civil Right’

OBAMA: “No. I think there are a whole host of things that are civil rights, and then there are other things–such as traditional marriage–that, I think, express a community’s concern and regard for a particular institution.”

Q: “So, marriage is not a civil right, as far as you’re concerned.”

OBAMA: “I don’t think marriage is a civil right, but I think that being able…”

Q: “Is it a human right?” 

OBAMA: “But I think that being able to transfer property is a civil right. I think not being…” 

Q: “Do you think marriage is a human right?”

OBAMA: “I think that not being able to, not being discriminated against is a civil right. I think making sure that we don’t engage in the sort of gay-bashing that, I think, has unfortunately dominated this campaign–not just here in Illinois, but across the country–I think, is unfortunate, and I think that that kind of mean-spirited attacks on homosexuals is something that the people of Illinois generally have rejected.”

Wow… quite the “Constitutional Scholar” that Obama is, eh?

-Bruce (GayPatriot)

Obama: Profile in Courage…. or Cowardice?

Posted by Bruce Carroll at 3:31 pm - May 9, 2012.
Filed under: Gay Marriage,Obama and Gay Issues


President Obama today announced that he now supports same-sex marriage, reversing his longstanding opposition amid growing pressure from the Democratic base and even his own vice president.

In an interview with ABC News’ Robin Roberts, the president described his thought process as an “evolution” that led him to this place, based on conversations with his own staff members, openly gay and lesbian service members, and conversations with his wife and own daughters.

As I said on Twitter a few minutes ago…

First Obama co-opts the Bush policies in the War on Terror and now he co-opts Dick Cheney’s position on gay marriage.  Progress!

I bet his supporters fighting for months to defeat Amendment One in North Carolina are real impressed that he let them hang out to dry until after the vote.  Charming.

Now you may all discuss…

-Bruce (GayPatriot)

UPDATE (from Dan): This headline may help explain things, Gay Money In This Election Has Replaced Wall Street Money.

UP-UPDATE (also from Dan):  This is a cynical move from a position of political weakness.  Will elaborate later today as time allows.

Had Obama moved forward on same-sex civil unions when his party had majorities in both houses of Congress, he might not be facing outcry over his gay marriage stand today

Yesterday, when I announced my determination to slow down the pace of blogging this week, I had intended to post only a handful of pieces on gay issues, first to indication my opposition to North Carolina’s Amendment One, then to offer a followup on the Grenell Matter, noting how that latter showed not the anti-gay animus that some Democratic partisans and gay activists were determined to find in the GOP, but the party’s own awkwardness on gay issues (for more on that, just read the passage I quoted in this post from the Huffington Post‘s Jon Ward).

Where the presumptive Republican nominee has handled social conservative concerns about a gay staffer in a most awkward manner, his Democratic counterpart has shown incredible “cowardice,” as one blogger put it, in handling the issue of gay marriage.  Bruce blogged that Obama “stepped in it.”  Others have been even less forgiving.

The real problem is that Obama didn’t try to find some sort of compromise in the first two years of his term when he had overwhelming Democratic majorities in both houses of Congress.  Had he had some significant political savvy, he might, for example, have sat down with gay leaders and pointed to the passage of Prop 8 in California, saying that it wouldn’t be prudent to push forward on gay marriage per se, but would instead focus on civil unions (touting such legislation as the Domestic Partnership Benefits and Obligations Act (H.R. 2517), a bill in the 111th Congress “which would grant domestic partners access to federal employee health care benefits“); he would have been wise to ask these leaders to identify key Republicans (e.g. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen in the House and Susan Collins in the Senate) who would be willing to help spearhead such efforts.

The Democrat would then be able to point to efforts (likely successful) he had made to advance the cause of same-sex couples.  There might not be a public outcry over gay marriage had he had accomplished something in terms of federal recognition of same-sex civil unions, even if just for government employees. (more…)

Looks like I picked the wrong week for slow blogging

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 5:35 pm - May 8, 2012.
Filed under: Blogging,Gay Marriage,Gay Politics,Obama and Gay Issues

Looks like I picked the wrong week for slow blogging:

UPDATE/EXPLANATION: As per the second post linked above, I had intended to blog at a slower pace this week than usual, but when I caught Jennifer Rubin’s post, I began to realize that the administration’s stance on gay marriage would come to dominate this week’s news cycle — much as the Grenell matter had dominated last week’s.

Indeed, this morning on Facebook, no fewer than five people had linked posts on the administration’s “cowardice“, as one conservative blogger put it, in the gay marriage debate — not to mention the posts I would chance upon the various conservative blogs I tend to scan every day.

As other blogs address this topic, it seems a gay conservative website should be on top of the issue.

The simple answer to your question, Jennifer, is, “Yes,”
(gay marriage advocates are being taken for fools)

Let me begin by reminding you of some important facts.  Democrat Barack Obama was elected president in November 2008, with strong support from gay groups, including many supporting state recognition of same-sex marriage.

When he took office, the president’s party, the Democratic, enjoyed overwhelming majorities in both houses of Congress.  From July 7, 2009 until February 4, 2010, that majority was filibuster-proof, that is, Senate Democrats didn’t need a single Republican vote to invoke cloture; they could vote on any item they wanted to.  Said legislative Democrats never voted to repeal the Defense of Marriage Act or even to pass a federal civil unions bill.  They only got their act together to vote on repealing Don’t Ask/Don’t Tell (DADT) after the election, but before the swearing in, of a Republican Congress in November 2010.

In short, Democrats in the 111th Congress had the chance to act on issues of concern to gay Americans, but failed to do so.

Now to the question.  Earlier today, Jennifer Rubin asked, “Are gay-marriage advocates being taken as fools?

On “Meet the Press,” Vice President Joe Biden said he’d be “comfortable with gay marriage,” an odd formulation for an important matter of public policy. (This is truly liberalism’s triumph of good intentions over actions.)

. . .

This is becoming the proverbial Lucy and the football. One wonders how often pro-gay-marriage activists, like poor Charlie Brown, are going to fall for this stuff.

. . . .

First, forking over lots of money gives you access; threatening to cut it off gets you attention. The leverage is with the gay community, whose financial and electoral power is considerable. But as long as the campaign takes gay voters (like Jews, Hispanics and union members) for granted, there is no reason for President Obama to move on this before the election.

Maybe had HRC not been so quick to endorse Obama, they might have been able to extract some concessions from the Democrat.  It seems though that the heads of that and other gay groups would rather be loved by the Democrats than see legislation passed recognizing our relationships.

UPDATE:  Deborah Kerr reminds us (@ 2:35 below) how HRC treats Obama: (more…)

Karl Rove didn’t backpedal when Dick Cheney suggested support for same-sex marriage

Glenn Reynolds reports, “BIDEN UNLEASHED: Goes against Obama and endorses gay marriage, Axelrod quick to back-pedal, hilarity ensues.”

RELATED:  Charlie Spiering contends that “Yes. Biden was off-script on gay marriage comments“.

Obama’s anti-Republican demagoguery at HRC fundraising dinner

Interesting that when President Obama addressed his party’s gay and lesbian auxiliary (the Human Rights Campaign) last night, he generated the most energetic reaction not for touting of his accomplishments, but for attacking Republicans:

The most electric reaction, however, came when Obama sharply criticized the GOP presidential candidates for staying silent when audience members at a debate booed a gay soldier who asked a question about DADT.

“We don’t believe in the kind of smallness that says it’s okay for a stage full of political leaders — one of whom could end up being the president of the United States — being silent when an American soldier is booed. We don’t believe in that,” said Obama to loud cheers and a standing ovation.

“We don’t believe in standing silent when that happens. We don’t believe in them being silent since. You want to be commander in chief? You can start by standing up for the men and women who wear the uniform of the United States, even when it’s not politically convenient. We don’t believe in a small America. We believe in a big America — a tolerant America, a just America, an equal America — that values the service of every patriot.”

It is sick what this Democrat is doing.  He didn’t need to attack Republicans.  He could have simply highlighted his accomplishments on issues of concern to the gay community, notably repeal of DADT (which even yours truly believes is a feather in his cap).

It is telling that Obama felt it incumbent upon himself to attack, attempting to hold Republican presidential candidates responsible for the boorish behavior of at most three (but likely just one) rude and disrespectful louts.  And it is telling that this mean-spirited attack generated the “most electric reaction” at an HRC event.

The only candidate who would be expected to condemn the boor would be the man to whom the gay soldier’s question was addressed.  And that man, Rick Santorum, albeit belatedly (though he claims not to have heard the boos during the debate*) did condemn the boors who bood the soldier.

To suggest that the Republican candidates do not stand up for the men and women in uniform is demagoguery plain and simple. The president should abolish for suggesting as much (while hinting at their “smallness“). (more…)

What tone will president adopt in his speech tonight?

Just eight days before the default deadline, the president has finally endorsed a plan to raise the debt limit, signing on to “debt-ceiling proposal by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid that would cut federal deficits by $2.7 trillion and increase the federal borrowing limit through 2012.

House Speaker John Boehner, however, finds that the plan is “full of gimmicks” and “fails to change” the federal “spending structure” nor does it “deal with entitlements.” Now that both sides have plans, will the president blame Republicans for intransigence if they fail to support it? House Republicans have already compromised, with leading members of the GOP caucus denouncing his latest plan.

It seems that for this president compromise means agreeing with him.

Will the president tonight lash out at Republicans for failing to walk in lock-step with him (and call that failure “intransigence”) or will he commend them for putting forward several plans to raise the debt limit while cutting spending?  His recent history of public statements on the debt crisis suggests the former.  As Peter Wehner wrote about the Democrat’s most recent such statement:

It’s been clear to some of us for a while that Barack Obama is a man of uncommon self-admiration, quite thin-skinned, and increasingly consumed by his grievances. Obama has masked these traits pretty well so far, but on Friday his mask slipped more than it ever has.

Via Instapundit.

Will the president focus on the good will efforts of individuals on both sides of the political aisle to solve the debt crisis or will he make it appear that he is the only adult in the room (and thus show he is anything but)?

Why didn’t Obama back this* when Democrats had majorities in both Houses of Congress?

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 1:08 am - July 20, 2011.
Filed under: Gay Marriage,Obama and Gay Issues

Obama Supports Repeal of Defense of Marriage Act:

President Obama is throwing his support behind the Respect for Marriage Act – the bill to repeal the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act, which banned the federal government from recognizing same-sex marriage even for couples married under state law.

Why didn’t he make any effort to repeal DOMA earlier in his term. Just asking.

*or similar legislation