Obama’s Effect on National Marriage Fight: May 14 Marriage News Watch

Obama endorses marriage equality. We’ll look
at what that means for LGBT Americans and for the future. Colorado’s civil unions bill
looked dead in the water last week, but this week the Governor’s found a way to give it
one last shot at passing in 2012. I’m Matt Baume at the American Foundation
for Equal Rights, and welcome to Marriage News Watch for May 14, 2012. Well the big news this week is President Obama
supporting marriage equality. Like a lot of Americans, Obama came to support equality
after meeting gay and lesbian citizens and seeing how comfortable young people are with
LGBT families. We won’t know the full effect of his announcement
for some time. But we can already see an impact on peoples’ lives around the country. As AFER
Board President Chad Griffin said, “For the millions of young gay and lesbian Americans
across this nation, their President’s words provide genuine hope that they will be the
first generation to grow up with the freedom to fully pursue the American dream.” AFER’s lead co-counsel Ted Olson had similar
remarks. He said, “President Obama’s words remind us that marriage and equality are universal
values that unite us all. They remind us that we are all — as a People and a Nation — striving
to form a more perfect Union.” By standing up for our rights, Obama is setting
an example for other politicians’ evolution on marriage. One day after the announcement,
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, the highest-ranking Mormon in the US government, announced that
“people should be able to marry whomever they want.” He added even he’d voted in the past
to ban marriage equality, but now he’ll vote for it. New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg is another
politician who struggled with the issue for years before shepherding a marriage equality
bill in New York. This week he tied Obama’s announcement to “the march of freedom that
has sustained our country since the Revolution of 1776.” Public support on marriage is growing rapidly.
This week, a Gallup poll became the ninth national survey to show that a majority support
the freedom to marry. We’ve seen a lot of major milestones in the fight for marriage
lately, and Obama’s announcement is one of the big ones. Now this policy announcement isn’t tied to
any particular legislation. But the first law for which it might inspire more bold stances
from legislators could be the civil unions bill in Colorado. The legislative session
ended last week before lawmakers could vote on the measure, so it looked like there was
no hope of passing it until next year. But Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper has announced
that he’ll call a special session starting this week. The votes are there to pass the
bill, and the Governor says he’ll sign it. The only obstacle now is House leadership
like Speaker Frank McNulty, who says he opposes debate. We’ll be following the Colorado situation
closely this week — you can subscribe here on YouTube to get regular updates on the fight
for marriage equality. And visit us at AFER.org for more on the federal fight to overturn
Prop 8. I’m Matt Baume at the American Foundation
for Equal Rights. We’ll see you next week.

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  1. its great that Obama is standing up for gay rights ! in the long run i doubt it will go further that talk !

  2. Funny thing about fundies/conservatives who call themselves "Christians":Jesus loathed their kind. He called them EVERYTHING "but a child of God".
    They always forget that part.lol

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