Buzzfeed.com reports that Obama’s confession of support for gay marriage is nothing new. He said as much already in 1996. He has admitted to having “evolving” opinions on the matter. But what is notable is the timing of when his opinions seem to evolve: election years.
The first is from an IL state senate primary election questionnaire submitted by Barack Obama. Chicago audience, full liberal Obama shines:
Obama in 1996: “I favor legalizing same-sex marriages,and would fight efforts to prohibit such marriages.”
Next, before a US Senate election. More general audience, Obama gets cautious:
Obama in 2004: My religious faith dictates marriage is between a man and a woman, gay marriage is not a civil right.
Then, US presidential primary, speaking before a specifically Evangelical audience (Rick Warren host):
Obama in 2008: I believe marriage is the union between a man and a woman. As a Christian it’s also a sacred union.
Again, same 2008 presidential season, but now in a more liberal venue.
Obama in 2008: I support civil unions.
Then, as president, while lifting the ban on “don’t ask don’t tell”—refusing to be clear on the issue, probably to disguise the fact that his views were driving the liberal decision.
Obama in 2010: My feelings about this are constantly evolving. I struggle with this.
[For video of each of these claims, see the link.]
Now, with an election coming in which incumbent Obama will need to energize his liberal base while retaining moderates, he outs himself as in favor of gay marriage (beyond civil unions), only referring to his faith to justify his change. (Apparently it’s not only his position on gay marriage that’s evolving, his faith is too.)