Renewed pressure was put on President Barack Obama just a day after his vice president spoke about same-sex unions. Obama has said on prior occasions that his thoughts were evolving in the issue of same-sex marriage, but he is now being pressured to make a clear stand on the issue despite the fact it could causes dire consequences for his bid to be reelected.
The push about the controversial issue extended to additional offices in the administration, as aides to White House insisted the vice president’s remarks on a talk show on Sunday were not any different from what President Obama has said on prior occasion.
Arne Duncan, the Education Secretary for Obama on Monday was asked if he supported same-sex marriage and he responded that he did. Joe Solmonese, the Human Rights Campaign president praised Secretary Duncan for his opinion and said he was certain the president of the country shares the same values and it is time for him to let the American public know and speak in favor of the issue.
Politically for his campaign for reelection, the consideration for Obama and the White House are complicated. Obama could alienate gay Americans who have been staunch supporters of his. With many of the young college students and college-educated workers, Obama is their popular choice and they, as well, tend to support same-sex marriage. However, one of his strongest groups of supporters, socially conservative blacks, opposes the issue. In particular, influential ministers, who Obama needs to help win the election.
If that is not enough, Obama risks looking calculating and cynical by straddling the issue that gay activists’ and many supporters feel he is privately in favor of.