President Barack Obama’s support of gay marriage seems to have gathered momentum as the deadline is fast approaching wherein the Supreme Court will decide whether same-sex couples will finally acquire the constitutional right to wed. Obama’s evolution on same-sex marriage seems to have come out with his open support to the cause in his second inaugural address, however, that is subject to the jurisdiction of the states. As of now, there are 29 states that ban same sex marriage, whereas nine states including the District of Columbia recognize the same.
Gay rights advocates are looking forward to having a more uniform law that makes same sex marriages legal in all the states. For this they would be filing a broad brief that asks for a Constitutional amendment which forbids any states against banning same sex weddings. However, in the current state of affairs, it does not seem that the filing of a brief can impact the verdict and that a lot of emphasis would be given to the Government’s opinion on the same, which calls for a critical role to be played by Obama as a catalyst for the same.
Obama has much evolved since his presidential candidate days in 2008 wherein he did oppose the California ban on gay marriage but did not lend it his support. “My feelings about this are constantly evolving,” Obama said about same-sex marriage in December of 2010. It was only until last year that he announced his personal willingness to lend support to same sex unions, however stating that it has to be decided by the respective states and would not come under the jurisdiction of the federal government. When Obama was questioned by Chuck Todd from NBC as to whether he would be uncomfortable with the fact that there could be different rules (laws) in different states, the President replied “what you’re seeing is a profound recognition on the part of the American people that gays and lesbians and transgender persons are our brothers, our sisters, our children, our cousins, our friends, our co-workers, and that they’ve got to be treated like every other American. And I think that principle will win out.”
The oral arguments in the Proposition 8 case would be heard by the Supreme Court on March 26, 2013.