Today, President Barack Obama became the first sitting U.S. President to fully support gay marriage.
For much of his political career, Obama has thought that gays and lesbians had all the rights they needed to be treated fairly. But he took that belief one step further in an interview that will air Thursday on “Good Morning America.”
“I’ve always been adamant that gay and lesbian Americans should be treated fairly and equally,” Obama told correspondent Robin Roberts.
Political analysts thought Obama might wait until after the November election to discuss what many already suspected, but in what was an unprecedented move, the President announced:
I have to tell you that over the course of several years, as I have talked to friends and family and neighbors, when I think about members of my own staff who are in incredibly committed monogamous relationships, same-sex relationships, who are raising kids together, when I think about those soldiers or airmen or marines or sailors who are out there fighting on my behalf and yet feel constrained, even now that ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’ is gone, because they are not able to commit themselves in a marriage, at a certain point I’ve just concluded that for me personally it is important for me to go ahead and affirm that I think same-sex couples should be able to get married.
Obama said his decision was also influenced by the fact that his daughters, Malia and Sasha, are friends with children who have gay parents.
Democrats House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi believes this is monumental day in American history.
“Today marks progress for the civil rights of LGBT Americans and all Americans. With President Obama’s support, we look forward to the day when all American families are treated equally in the eyes of the law,” Pelosi said.
Obama told ABC News that he believes gay marriage is a “generational” issue.