Interchangeable news story on President Obama’s announcement of “personal support” for gay marriage
WASHINGTON — In a move hailed by gay rights and liberal activists as “unprecedented” and “historic,” President Barack Obama announced today that he personally believes that same-sex couples should be able to marry, but not enough to actually do anything about it.
“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,” the president noted, historically and unprecedentedly. “That being said, there’s no reason for anybody to worry that I’m going to help in any way to make it easier for those same-sex couples to actually do that.”
“I mean,” added Mr. Obama, “I’m not crazy.”
In addition to his assurances that he would in no way act on his deeply held personal conviction, Mr. Obama also pointed out that he believes that the states should continue to have the power to make the thing he is deeply and personally committed to totally and irrevocably illegal. Also, when asked, Mr. Obama declined to endorse the position that same-sex couples have a Constitutional right to marry.
“It is my deeply held personal conviction that same-sex couples should be able to get married,” Mr. Obama repeated, this time more slowly. “Unless, of course, that would offend their neighbors, or really anybody who lives within the same state as them, even people hundreds of miles away they have never met and will never meet. Then they’re on their own.”
Mr. Obama’s announcement was received with joy by gay rights activists and liberal commentators, all of whom said that this announcement was totally different from previous historic and unprecedented statements of deeply held personal conviction made by Mr. Obama regarding support for reining in the power of Wall Street, securing the rights of women, racial minorities, and workers, and ending the use by the United States of torture and secret, extralegal detention centers to prosecute the War on Terror, all of which were followed by token gestures in their general direction before being quietly abandoned.
“It’s true that Mr. Obama has a made something of a habit of responding to genuine problems in society with rhetorical flourishes rather than substantive policy proposals,” explained one nationally prominent gay rights activist. “I’m confident, however, that unlike his previous historic and unprecedented statements, this historic and unprecedented statement will be followed by action, because unlike the others, this unprecedented and historic statement is on a subject that I personally care about.”
A well-known liberal political blogger agreed. “While others may doubt whether President Obama’s statement today is truly historic and unprecedented,” the blogger remarked, “I can assure you that it is not just unprecedented, but also historic. We’re all talking about it, after all. And if it wasn’t historic and unprecedented, would people who obsess over the most trivial minutiae of national politics really spend time talking about it?”
At a campaign stop in South Carolina, Mr. Obama’s opponent in the 2012 presidential election, presumptive Republican nominee Mitt Romney, took issue with Mr. Obama’s remarks, describing them as a “flip-flop.”
“Unlike Barack Obama,” Romney told a crowd of supporters, “my position on same-sex marriage has been totally consistent: I oppose it, unless I’m campaigning in New York City, California, or New England, in which case I take care to tack on some tepid remarks indicating that I might be willing to support a weaker alternative like civil unions without ever coming out and saying so.”
“In politics,” noted Mr. Romney, “consistency is a virtue.”