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President Obama, Gay Marriage and Seven Essential States

ObamaFloridaAccording to Politico, there are seven states where President Obama's gay marriage support could hinder his campaign. They are, in no particular order, North Carolina, Colorado, Florida, Nevada, Iowa, where gay marriage is legal, and Missouri.

Here is what reporter Charles Mahtesian has to say about the Florida scene:

One day, gay marriage might be enshrined in law across the map. But it won’t be until after the current generation of senior citizens passes away. Not only do they oppose it by lopsided margins, they also vote in disproportionately high percentages.

Consider this fact about Florida, a state with an unusually large population of seniors. Four years ago, Obama and an anti-gay marriage constitutional amendment shared the Florida ballot. Obama won the state narrowly, the amendment won by a landslide.

And the amendment won 600,000 more votes than Obama.

The president can still win reelection without Florida’s treasure trove of electoral votes. But he’d prefer not to risk it, which could be the side effect of a public affirmation of support for gay marriage in a state as competitive as Florida.

I tend to think that despite the much-deserved fanfare over Obama's marriage announcement, most voters this November will be more concerned about the economy than Adam and Steve. And I think the Obama administration knows that, too. It's not as if he will -- or could -- rest his entire reelection campaign on this decision, right?

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  1. I think it's time to put together a coalition to refuse to pay taxes until we are afforded the same rights as heterosexuals. I also think that the church needs to be punished for blurring the separation of church and state. Time the church paid taxes... it's called pay to play.

    Posted by: Oliver | May 10, 2012 10:55:41 AM

  2. When are we going to discuss the apparent inconsistencies in what Obama said? I've heard three points that Obama made yesterday.

    1. Gays and lesbians should be able to marry legally.

    2. The issue should receive heightened scrutiny in the courts.

    3. Marriage laws should be decided by the states.

    Points 2 and 3 make no sense when put in combination.

    If Obama really believes marriage laws should be decided by the states, then he must also believe that Loving v Virginia was wrongly decided by the Supreme Court and states should be free today to ban inter-racial marriage.

    If Obama believes point 2, then he believes federal courts should decide that marriage equality is a federal right that individual states should not be able to outlaw.

    He can't have it both ways.

    Posted by: Tim NC | May 10, 2012 11:03:47 AM

  3. Tim, I don't think you read the article that you posted under or else you would understand why differently nuanced statements are out there.

    Posted by: Gregoire | May 10, 2012 11:06:40 AM

  4. we all have to get behind him and keep him in office

    Posted by: cape tom | May 10, 2012 11:10:34 AM

  5. Hey if you don't like Obama, move to Russia and tell us how that works out for ya.

    Posted by: QJ201 | May 10, 2012 11:14:47 AM

  6. Obama's announcement has put North Carolina out of play in November, he just got on the wrong side of an issue that over 6 in 10 North Carolinians voted for. And with Florida likely going to Romney, the only thing that matters once again is Ohio, where the election every year is decided by a narrow sliver of blue collar, social conservative swing voters.

    For those of you who think that gay marriage isn't a driving issue for republican voters anymore, well it just gave North Carolina its biggest voter turnout in over a quarter-century. It was virtually the only measure on the ballot. This will prove a hugely advantageous wedge issue for the Romney campaign in winning vital swing states in November.

    And if gay marriage is important to you, you better hope Obama gets re-elected. Why? Ruth Bader Ginsberg. The only real chance to see gay marriage across the country in this generation is through the Supreme Court. Ginsberg will die during the next four-year term, and if Romney is in the White House, the court's balance will be shifted forever, for the first time in history hardline conservatives will control a 5-4 majority.

    Posted by: Mike C. | May 10, 2012 11:19:00 AM

  7. Senior citizens in Florida will not care about unemployment. They WILL care about Medicare and Social Security, which will be wins for Obama.

    Posted by: TC | May 10, 2012 11:19:16 AM

  8. That's right gays, vote for Obama and send him lot's of $. He's the only one out there for you, the only one that loves you. You have no other choices, so s*ck on it, OK? Now, just shut up and be good little gays and send in your $ and votes. No dissension will be tolerated any further. Just do as you're told by your gay media and gay 'advocates'. They will do your thinking for you, you will follow accordingly and unquestioningly. Those who dare to dissent will be ostracized by The Community. This is as it should be. Now stop the drama, and carry on with your assigned duties.

    Posted by: ratbastard | May 10, 2012 11:21:59 AM

  9. @ Ratbastard, get back on your medication dude...You can still vote for Romney, though he doesn't even think you deserve the right to a civil union. You can still show him the love...no one will arrest you for it.

    Posted by: Pedro | May 10, 2012 11:25:38 AM

  10. "Ginsberg will die during the next four-year term"

    Mike C, I hope you meant Justice Ginsburg will retire. And hopefully she will be replaced by a progres...I mean, LIBERAL judge. If you're going to kill off a justice let it be Scalia or Thomas--or even young Chief Justice Roberts has a history of health issues.

    Y'all just say anything.

    Posted by: Derrick from Philly | May 10, 2012 11:34:11 AM

  11. Ratbastard, as usual with nothing meaningful to say, just bullying tactics, operating from a place of mental instability.

    Posted by: Gregoire | May 10, 2012 11:36:03 AM

  12. @Mike C You need to realize that some of the people who voted for Amendment One were African Americans and the majority of those are not going to abandon Obama over this one issue. They're not going to be running to Romney no matter what. The rest who voted for that Amendment were never going to vote for Obama anyway and some of them didn't even understand what they were voting for. I'd say the state of NC is still in play.

    We'll have to wait and see how much of a driving issue issue it is. No matter what, it's better to be on the side of equality and the side of history no matter the results.

    Obama made it an issue now and Romney can't get away with just dismissing it with 'both the President and I' feel the same way as he's done in the past. Romney looks very uncomfortable trying to defend bigotry.

    Posted by: sara | May 10, 2012 11:39:09 AM

  13. Figures you all would selfishly try to put a brave face on this. It's a strategic disaster. But I hope you are enjoying the pablum. I'm turning in my membership card.

    Posted by: Wilberforce | May 10, 2012 11:39:15 AM

  14. 1. It is not fair to say that NC overwhelmingly voted for Amendment 1. Ask yourself why, unlike almost every other time, this was put on the ballot during a Republican primary instead of the general election. Maybe it still would have won, but it would have been MUCH closer if Democrats had any reason to come out in droves on Tuesday.

    2. I think seniors in Florida will care more about Romney/Ryan's end to Medicare than Obama's personal beliefs on marriage. I think NC Democrats will be seeking revenge on Republicans who made them look like a typical Southern state on Tuesday. I believe Obama's team worked out the numbers and figured that his announcement would be a net gain in the swing states.

    3. Marriage IS left to the states -- it is not a "should" or "could" -- it is a Constitutional fact. Heightened scrutiny SHOULD apply, but it does not yet. A full repeal of DOMA would mean the federal government provides federal benefits to people married legally in MA/NY/DC etc., and MAYBE that anti-gay states have to recognize those marriages too. First DOMA has to be repealed, and then the 30 anti-gay state amendments need to be challenged. There is nothing inconsistent about Obama's position.

    Posted by: Scott | May 10, 2012 11:41:32 AM

  15. Is everyone here in a reality warp? No, I meant Ruth Bader Ginsburg. She's dying, she has pancreatic cancer and is in poor health. Most of us wished she would preemptively retire before the 2012 election, but she instead she is serving until the end of her life, which will come too soon. Scalia and Thomas are much younger, in fine health and will live at least another 8 years. But no matter, the point is, if Romney wins and Ginsberg most likely dies during his presidency, it won't matter what happens to Scalia or Thomas, the balance of the court will be shifted for at least a generation, we will never see a decision our way

    Posted by: Mike C. | May 10, 2012 11:42:02 AM

  16. I don't think you can completely discount the points MikeC was making, although you can take issue with some of the analysis. Nevertheless, the Supreme Court is the relatively quiet issue of this Campaign the will have a MAJOR impact on generations to-come. And, as I see it, the only way (in the near future) to overcome those states that have a constitutional amendment banning Marriage Equality.

    Posted by: Belthazar | May 10, 2012 11:49:13 AM

  17. Wilberforce
    What's your issue?

    Posted by: GeorgeM | May 10, 2012 11:53:51 AM

  18. I grew up in Florida and I live here now, in the Tampa/St. Pete area. I agree we need the seniors to die off before there is a real change BUT things are better: I got married in DC and had a large reception at a local yacht club - which was totally cool about it. My parents now say the word "gay." I was invited to join a prestigious fine arts organization's board after I made it clear I was not willing to hide my spouse. The list goes on. But a HUGE problem is lazy young people who do not vote to neutralize the angry octogenarians.

    Posted by: JC | May 10, 2012 11:58:49 AM

  19. You Obama-loving liberals are just so pathetic. Blacks shot my father and then they got away with it, and now he's dead, all because of ghetto blacks and you liberals sit here and you let the liberal media make it seem as if whites are the enemy. I hate blacks and I hate liberals and if you pathetic stereotypical gays want to keep giving money to democrats you'll deserve it when you all get shot by blacks too. Oh, and now people will come on and call me a racist, because it's never a black person's fault is it, liberals? No, liberals never blame blacks even though they're responsible for crimes and fill our jails for good reason. And any of us who don't fall in lockstep with the gay community are made to feel like outcasts. Nice liberal tolerance there.

    Posted by: ratbastard | May 10, 2012 12:00:33 PM

  20. And - to Scott, who thinks marriage is left to the states as a constitutional issue - you are wrong; it should not be -- check the Full Faith and Credit Clause. I say this as a lawyer, not a gay man.

    Posted by: JC | May 10, 2012 12:00:41 PM

  21. Mike - The turnout in NC was high for a primary, but still half the turnout of a general election. They put it on the primary ballot precisely because they weren't confident that it would be a winning wedge issue against Obama in the fall.

    Posted by: cm | May 10, 2012 12:18:59 PM

  22. I did all the research on this years ago.

    Florida is the state that could flip because of the President's announcement...provided he gets over ~ 70% of the gay vote in that state (which he didn't in 2008).

    I would now say that Florida is a for sure blue state on November 6, 2012 (barring a national catastrophe).

    Posted by: Chitown kev | May 10, 2012 12:24:03 PM

  23. The other thing is that, yes, young voters were apathetic about the President...much more so than 4 years ago.

    Now they won't be.

    Posted by: Chitown kev | May 10, 2012 12:25:04 PM

  24. Rat you're a sick fu-k, if what you said is even true
    Go somewhere else

    Posted by: GeorgeM | May 10, 2012 12:35:08 PM

  25. Chitown, are you saying Florida could go blue because of the 'GAY vote'? That makes no sense, and even your 'research' is impossible

    Posted by: Mike C. | May 10, 2012 12:38:07 PM

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