Way To Go, Joe! Biden and POTUS Do The Right Thing re: Marriage Equality

Way To Go, Joe! Biden and POTUS Do The Right Thing re: Marriage Equality

Can I just say how much I love Joe Biden??? I love Joe Biden. I always have. I love that he will speak his mind, whether it is politically correct, or whether it’ll piss somebody off. I love that he speaks from the heart, whether it’s to say he supports same-sex marriage or whether it’s to tell The President that passing Health Care Reform “…is a big fucking deal!” ‘Cause, damn it, it IS a big, fucking deal!!! While the media portrays Joe as putting his foot in his mouth, I see it as a guy who doesn’t give a damn about speaking out, because he lives by his principles. If he says it, he believes it. And, by God, that makes Joe my kinda guy, bless his heart!

There are times when The President needs to stand up and lead. Today was one of those times. And I am grateful that he has taken a courageous stance supporting marriage equality. But let’s give Joe Biden some credit where credit is due.

But I have to say, my fellow Politicos, I am wondering if the Administration wanted it out there. Was this a strategic move? Was Joe given permission to go ahead and cut loose? Was Arne Duncan the follow-up, thus creating a “need” for The President to clarify his position on the issue? Seems mighty convenient, if you ask me…I believe that, while some see this as a politically risky move, I see it as smart and savvy. And highly deliberate! Here’s why:

1. First of all, what better way to mobilize the young voters and the base of the Democratic Party than to take a stand that is favorable to that demographic and well-overdue? Gotta get out the vote in November, folks, and better to get the position out there now and make it old news for the news cycle in November. This is a winner in this department, people.

2. POTUS can’t have a divided house. You simply can’t have that kind of dissention in an administration, so if a few folks conveniently state their opinions, well, The President is “forced” to present a united front. Calculated or not.

3. Public opinion. Hate to break it to the GOP, but being gay or lesbian ain’t no big thang anymore! My daughter got into a heated debate with a classmate in a college summer course last year (she’s been taking her high school language requirement at the local community college). She was downright angry and incensed over his hypocrisy on the issue, and matched him bible verse for verse, argued her point, and used his own logic against him. He finally walked away, stating that “It’s just wrong.” She was just as angry about his ignorance and hypocrisy as his stand on the issue. But most of all, she was angry that people we love, family and friends, would be treated differently because they are gay or lesbian. And that’s part of what The President has talked about today. How his kids don’t see the same-sex parents of their friends any differently. And the views of the public in favor of marriage equality are increasing steadily:

 

4. Follow the money. So, I was giving my dear friend, Thomas, a hard time awhile back about him and his partner being such world travelers, always globe-trotting around the planet. His response, in the absolutely brilliant Thomas style that I love so well, was “Of course we travel! We’re gay and we have no children!” The President is no slouch. He knows that there are numerous wealthy LGBT donors who will be happy to cut loose, as soon as President Obama takes a strong stand on marriage equality, as promised, when he “finishes evolving.” And there’s this from the Washington Post:

About one in six of Obama’s top campaign “bundlers” are gay, according to a Washington Post review of donor lists, making it difficult for the president to defer the matter. Activists are planning a campaign for the adoption of a pro-gay-marriage plank in this year’s Democratic Party platform. And a series of referendums this year on same-sex marriage — including one in the swing state of North Carolina on Tuesday — are putting the issue at the forefront.

The AFL-CIO has already spoken in support of The President’s announcement, again, another group that can put some significant money behind the reelection bid. Follow the money, Kids. Every time.

5. The President has cojones, and doesn’t flip-flop. He has taken a definitive stand, yet another contrast against his GOP opponent, Mr. Mitt “Flip-flopper” Romney. ‘Nuff said.

There are negatives, of course, to The President taking his stand. It puts Virginia and North  Carolina in play a bit more than they already are. But with the Democratic National Convention in North Carolina and my dear liberal friends fighting the good fight there – low voter turnout put Prop One over the edge, and there are many good people fighting hard there (yo, Kim G and Ashley!) – there will be enough momentum by Dems to rule the day there. Another possible factor in play is the African-American vote:

African Americans have consistently been one of the groups most resistant to gay marriage. In that year’s worth of Post-ABC polling, just 42 percent said they support legalization while 55 percent oppose it. Yes, it’s unlikely that black voters leave Obama in droves over the issue. But it’s easier to see this decision taking some of the passion for him out of this community. (Washington Post)

But certainly, African-Americans will support President Obama. That’s clear. What else? Will the conservative right band together on this issue? Yes, of course. But their crazy-ass, hypocrisy and hubris will be its own reward for the left. But really, there are so few negatives for The President’s “coming out” with his position today.

Call me a conspiracy theorist if you will, but I truly believe this was a pragmatic political power play on the part of POTUS. (Sorry, but I couldn’t resist all that alliteration…) It was smart, and well-played, Mr. President. But I also believe The President has felt this way for a long time, and been unable to voice his principles due to the political tide of the moment. And for that, I thank him for his announcement today. 

My prediction: The next election will see a change in the House and Senate. That will allow The President (yes, it will still be Barak Obama!) to move forward on issues of importance, namely, marriage equality (and since we’re predicting here, what the Hell? Jobs, student loans, women’s rights and my fave, infrastructure). I see the Obama Administration with many parallels to the Clinton Administration: first term, learn to govern; second term, get good work done. And tonight, after hearing that the reelection campaign scored a good million dollars in the few short hours since The President’s announcement, I think he’s got to be pretty happy with his decision.

So, good for you, Mr. President. I am delighted to see that you are showing the kind of leadership we expect on human rights issues. It is a courageous decision. But God bless my buddy, Joe Biden. He blew it out of the water. He led the way, strategic or not. And he’ll make a damn fine President of these United States. Keep telling it like it is, Joe.

Thanks for your time, my friends. Put your two cents in below here at Kitchen Table Politics!

8 Comments

  1. I’m totally with you on Biden. Love him. He was my first choice for President. He simply does not have the bullshit gene. This is a great analysis of the President’s decision to finally “come out.” Whether forced to or deliberate, you’re right about the timing. By November, I hope it will be yesterday’s news. Meanwhile, I’m proud of the President for finally showing WORLD leadership on this issue.

    • Jayne, I always knew I liked you! Joe was my first choice as well. I’m really glad, calculated or not, that POTUS has shown, as you so beautifully put it, WORLD leadership. Couldn’t agree with you more on all points! Thanks for coming by, Jayne! Always a pleasure.

  2. I think it was calculated and brilliantly so.

    Getting this out of the way sooner rather than later will serve the Democratic agenda as the GOP continues its insane divisiveness.

    • Well-stated, Cheryl. Thanks for coming by, by the way! It never ceases to amaze me the extent of the divisiveness of the GOP. Problem is, their “wedge issues” just aren’t very “wedgie” anymore…and the clown car keeps rolling on…Smart and concise comment, Cheryl. Hope you’ll come by again soon – will check out your blog as well, friend!

  3. Great post. I love the “conspiracy theory.” I’m glad that you made the point to go on and say that you felt the president has probably shared this personal opinion for quite sometime. Most importantly, his policies have reflected that long before he said it publicly and actions speak louder than words.

    It certainly is interesting that the GOP continues to move forward maintaining the same position on social issues when polls have reflected that their positions do not reflect the beliefs of the majority of Americans. They must be really banking on catching the vote of the elderly church folk like my grandparents. Question is, what happens to the GOP after this base is gone?

    Also, I find it interesting that the GOP’s presidential hopeful states that he firmly believes a marriage is exclusively between a man and a woman…but what about a man and 5 women??

    • Hey, there, Mandi! Glad you came by, Kid. Nothing like a good conspiracy theory. ;) True, POTUS has put forth more pro-equality measures than any other president. And that has most certainly shown his beliefs every bit as well as his recent statement has.

      Yep, the elderly church folk – Mittens has them locked up! The beauty of the GOP’s wedge issue strategy is that, all of a sudden, the wedge isn’t a wedge anymore! And it just isn’t effective anymore. When someone being LGBT is no big thang, it loses its divisive power. Only the folks that wouldn’t be voting for The President will be upset by it – no lost votes, and a terribly safe bet. (Might lose a small percentage of African-American religious votes, but disagreeing with one issue of the platform of the first African-American president won’t be fatal for POTUS.) It has been a blast watching the clown car unload and the GOP fracture. It’s a fascinating process, and you have to wonder where they’ll end up!

      LOL! Yeah, Mittens also states that he believes in traditional marriage. Marriage should stay the way it has historically been. Guess I’d better start building my daughter’s dowry and try to marry her off to a neighbor so we can have a bigger lot in our suburban tract. Oh, and while Mitt’s at it, I guess we’d better end interracial and interfaith marriages, end women in the working world (traditionally, we should be in the home waiting with pipe, slippers and martini for The Hubby to come home), and make sure women aren’t the primary breadwinners in half or more of American households. Yeah, marriage has always been the same, why change now, right???

      So glad you came by the Kitchen Table, GF. You’re a smart cookie, and I love your perspective! Hope you’ll come by again, Sistah!

  4. I think Obama raised a million dollars after his announcement.

    It was definitely a calculated move, though Biden released the announcement a wee bit early from what I’ve read. But I think that the time-line worked, built suspense.

    My 22-year old son also doesn’t think that gay is a big deal. He thought the announcement was great. He visits my brother-in-law and partner down in Florida and goes out to dinner with his friends. No biggie.

    Obama’s support of gay marriage will also help him with Independents. As Biden says, “It’s no longer your father’s Republican Party.” I love that the man speaks his mind.

    • Yep, Lauren, you just gotta love Joe! He calls ‘em like he sees ‘em! i think you’re right about the “no big whup” for our kids’ generation when it comes to marriage equality. “It’s no longer your father’s Republican Party.” Amen! Hell, things have skewed so far right that lefty folks like me would have been considered Eisenhower Republicans! Always good to have you at the Kitchen Table, Lauren, my Dear. :)

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I refuse to cave to a minivan. I am still a tomboy - comfortable in Levi's, my Yankees cap and Converse. And I always have a political opinion...hell, I always have an opinion, period. The hubby, my kids and my friends think I should run for office. Maybe one day. But for now, Momma Politico blogs. Peruse, enjoy, and know that our busy lives are as significant as those in The Washington Post. Cheers, Heidi Haines AKA Perry MacNeil Momma Politico

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