President Obama Endorses Gay Marriage in ABC News Interview

President Obama today endorsed marriage equality in an ABC News interview with Robin Roberts after the White House experienced a tumultuous three days of questioning by the press spurred by Vice President Joe Biden's Meet the Press remarks on Sunday. Biden remarked that he was "absolutely comfortable" with gay people marrying, a statement that took him to the left of the President, who has said since he took office that he is "evolving" on the issue.

Obama Said Obama:

"I have to tell you that over the course of several years as I have talked to friends and family and neighbors when I think about members of my own staff who are in incredibly committed monogamous relationships, same-sex relationships, who are raising kids together, when I think about those soldiers or airmen or marines or sailors who are out there fighting on my behalf and yet feel constrained, even now that Don’t Ask Don’t Tell is gone, because they are not able to commit themselves in a marriage, at a certain point I’ve just concluded that for me personally it is important for me to go ahead and affirm that I think same sex couples should be able to get married."

Added the President:

“It’s interesting, some of this is also generational. You know when I go to college campuses, sometimes I talk to college Republicans who think that I have terrible policies on the economy, on foreign policy, but are very clear that when it comes to same sex equality or, you know,  believe in equality. They are much more comfortable with it. You know, Malia and Sasha, they have friends whose parents are same-sex couples. There have been times where Michelle and I have been sitting around the dinner table and we’re talking about their friends and their parents and Malia and Sasha, it wouldn’t dawn on them that somehow their friends’ parents would be treated differently. It doesn’t make sense to them and frankly, that’s the kind of thing that prompts a change in perspective.”

The President also cited his faith in the announcement and the influence of First Lady Michelle Obama:

“This is something that, you know, we’ve talked about over the years and she, you know, she feels the same way, she feels the same way that I do. And that is that, in the end the values that I care most deeply about and she cares most deeply about is how we treat other people and, you know, I, you know, we are both practicing Christians and obviously this position may be considered to put us at odds with the views of others but, you know, when we think about our faith, the thing at root that we think about is, not only Christ sacrificing himself on our behalf, but it’s also the Golden Rule, you know, treat others the way you would want to be treated. And I think that’s what we try to impart to our kids and that’s what motivates me as president and I figure the most consistent I can be in being true to those precepts, the better I’ll be as a as a dad and a husband and hopefully the better I’ll be as president.”

More clips of the interview are scheduled to air this evening on ABC World News Tonight with Diane Sawyer and ABC's Good Morning America Thursday.

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Obama's position on the issue up till this point has been seen as a purely political one, and has been dogged by a 1996 survey he filled out as a candidate for the Illinois state senate in 1996, which stated "I favor legalizing same-sex marriages, and would fight efforts to prohibit such marriages."

ABC News posted a timeline on Obama's marriage evolution.

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  1. We can 100% stand behind the man now and his convictions. I am donating TODAY. Any of you gays who are worried can kiss my ass. I am now fighting to reelect this man even MORE than in 2008. We are going to shove this in Romney's face every single day.


    Posted by: Jollysocks | May 9, 2012 3:13:32 PM

  2. I just put my money where my mouth is and donated to the president's reelection. Congratulations to the president!

    Posted by: Paul | May 9, 2012 3:14:00 PM

  3. come out. have conversations with allies and opponents alike. support the politicians who support you. vote.

    Posted by: andnowwhat | May 9, 2012 3:14:19 PM

  4. To those who think that this will cost him the election, rest assured that those who would not vote for him simply because now he personally supports same sex marriage never would have voted for him in the first place.

    Posted by: Brian | May 9, 2012 3:14:29 PM

  5. Finally ~ Now it up to every thinking person to support him!!!

    Posted by: Mike | May 9, 2012 3:14:34 PM

  6. In a blow to gay progressives Obama endorses gay marriage! I remember very well how the progressives here urged Obama to stay in the closet on this issue.

    Posted by: AG | May 9, 2012 3:14:54 PM

  7. @BABH Let's still have the states vote on minority rights! Without federal intervention, binational couples don't have a chance.

    Posted by: Jwwow | May 9, 2012 3:15:37 PM

  8. I am finding myself surprisingly emotional about this. So proud of him. When I was teenager realizing who I was in the midst of the AIDS crisis, I never imagined in my wildest dreams that an American president would totally accept us in my lifetime. This is so huge for our community. No we owe it to him to dig deep and be generous with our time and money. America is at such a critical crossroads.

    Posted by: kjpnyc | May 9, 2012 3:16:04 PM

  9. I'm floored. This is such a huge moment in LGBT history. Amazing

    Posted by: JL | May 9, 2012 3:17:09 PM

  10. I am very pleased by this. I understand how the circumstances evolved into this developement, but I wish it had happened several weeks ago when it may have had an impact on Amend. 1. However it is great to hear him say it.
    Even so, I wanted this for a long time and now that I've got it, I worry what impact this may have on the election.

    Posted by: NullNaught | May 9, 2012 3:18:04 PM

  11. The first sitting president EVER in our history to endorse marriage equality. This is a good day.

    I'll admit to some nerves about this, and what the political ramifications will be. The bottom line is that we have to double-down on our efforts to support him. We better step up and do our part, now that he's heard our cries.

    Posted by: Rick | May 9, 2012 3:18:08 PM

  12. They must have polled this to death, and realized that they needed to fire up the base. None of this is spontaneous.

    Posted by: Feral | May 9, 2012 3:18:27 PM

  13. that he...President Obama...has cleared yet another hurdle that the LGBT community has laid before him...and all the bitching and moaning in here and the disingenuous gripes about it....NOW will all u guys support him?...or will you find another reason to not vote for him that masks ur TRUE reason for not wanting to vote for him. If he loses this election...I wont be able to not hold our community responsible for not working to unprecedented levels to support him. Get to work LGBT folks....I know i will.

    Posted by: jt | May 9, 2012 3:19:06 PM

  14. This is the day Obama lost any chance of getting reelected. The gay community has willingly and foolishly just helped elect the first Mormon president by forcing Obama to vocalize something, that we all knew he believed. He will lose Iowa, Florida and NC But hey he FINALLY said it, and all the gays are happy! Yippity dooda!

    Posted by: Pedro | May 9, 2012 3:19:24 PM

  15. Oh, but that said-- WOO HOO!!!!!!!!

    Posted by: Feral | May 9, 2012 3:19:30 PM

  16. Oh, but that said-- WOO HOO!!!!!!!!

    Posted by: Feral | May 9, 2012 3:19:31 PM

  17. Thank you, Mr. President. You already had my vote but THANK YOU!

    Posted by: Larry | May 9, 2012 3:22:18 PM

  18. I'm very happy he said this, BUT too bad he waited until after NC voted against ANY type of recognition of same-sex relationships... why is he always doing great things, but AFTER the point when we needed him to act.

    Posted by: GraphicJack | May 9, 2012 3:23:51 PM

  19. middle


    economy is the issue and this lays a trap for romney repubs to go culture war instead :-)

    Posted by: say what | May 9, 2012 3:26:00 PM

  20. I'm having "the vapours" !
    Eight years of the worst President ever followed by four plus four of one of the Greatest Presidents.....!!!
    It' almost years of famine now seven years of plenty.

    How ironic !

    Posted by: JackFknTwist | May 9, 2012 3:26:29 PM

  21. After NC Amendment One passed the way it did, I'm glad he finally came out in support of it. I don't think it will hurt him, I actually think this will galvanize his base more, which can exploit Romney's weakness at being unable to galvanize the Republican base. Politics aside, I certainly have more faith in him now.

    Posted by: Matt | May 9, 2012 3:28:53 PM

  22. Well, there go the independents and there goes the election.

    I hope everyone is happy now. Enjoy the new Inquisition the Romney administration will bring down.

    Posted by: Polyboy | May 9, 2012 3:29:11 PM

  23. I'm writing a check right now!

    Posted by: Oliver | May 9, 2012 3:30:06 PM

  24. I have to say, this brought tears to my eyes. I can't believe the words I'm hearing.

    I have to say to all those who have scorned obama, I told you so.

    Now, however, I really see all sorts of political problems for him.

    This will motivate the Christian right like wildfire. And the left will be fired up, but a much smaller proportion.

    I'm proud of our president, but I'm worried.

    Posted by: dms | May 9, 2012 3:30:14 PM

  25. Finally... y'all might catch up to your cousins in the north. :)

    Posted by: NorthoftheBorder | May 9, 2012 3:32:01 PM

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