As a presidential candidate, Mr. Obama said he would “fight hard” for the rights of gay couples. As a senator, he sponsored legislation that would have provided health benefits to same-sex partners of federal employees.
Now, Mr. Obama is in a tough spot. If he supports the personnel office on denying benefits to the San Francisco court employees, he risks agitating liberal groups that helped him win election. If he supports the judges and challenges the marriage act, he risks alienating Republicans with whom he is seeking to work on economic, health care and numerous other matters.
It doesn’t seem it’s a tough choice if we listen to President Obama’s people:
Ben LaBolt, a White House spokesman, said: “While the president opposes gay marriage, he supports legislative repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act. He believes this country must realize its founding promise of equality by treating all its citizens with dignity and respect.”
Mr. Obama and his choice for director of the personnel office, M. John Berry, have endorsed the idea of providing health benefits to same-sex partners of federal employees.
So, let’s see, Obama campaigned saying he would give more rights to same sex couples, Democrats mostly agree with him (and there are probably more that think his problem is that he hasn’t gone far enough), but he might hurt the feelings of some Republicans. Seems like an easy choice to me.