President Obama defended his personal view that gay people should have the right to marry in America and took it a step further. The President called for the repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA).
Obama has always put out feelers to determine if DOMA, which is a federal law defining marriage as between a man and a woman, should be repealed. Obama has never before openly called for a repeal.
Obama laid out his plans for a second term today. He listed repeal of DOMA, the passing of the Dream Act to give illegal immigrants a pathway to citizenship, Wall Street Reform and school investments.
Obama said in his speech,
“We have never gone wrong when we expanded rights and responsibilities to everybody. That doesn’t weaken families, that strengthens families.”
The president was raising money before an audience of gay and lesbian supporters in New York, hosted by the LGBT Leadership Council and openly gay singer Ricky Martin, as well as Latino group The Futuro Fund.
The President seems to be planning a push to increase visibility for his views on marriage equality even so some within his circle see there being a level of political risk. The campaign last week released a web video heralding the announcement, while casting Romney as “backwards on equality.” The president went on to raise nearly $15 million Thursday night from donors attending a campaign event at George Clooney‘s house.
Obama’s Republican opponent in the 2012 election has had to clarify his position on marriage equality in order to appease those in his base lately too. Romney told a gathering at the Christian Liberty University that he strongly believed marriage was the union of one man and one woman.