President Obama Affirms His Support for Same Sex Marriage
Loading...In an interview with ABC News' Robin Roberts, the president described his thought process as an "evolution" that led him to this decision, based on conversations with his staff members, openly gay and lesbian service members, and his wife and daughters.
Excerpts of the interview will air tonight on ABC's "World News With Diane Sawyer" and "Nightline."
The president stressed that this is a personal position, and that he still supports the concept of states' deciding the issue on their own. But he said he's confident that more Americans will grow comfortable with gays and lesbians getting married, citing his own daughters' comfort with the concept.
Watch Obama Explains Support for Same Sex Marriage
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Previously, Obama has moved in the direction of supporting same-sex marriage but has consistently stopped short of outright backing it.
Instead, he has voiced support for civil unions for gay and lesbian couples that provide the rights and benefits enjoyed by married couples, although not defined as "marriage." At the same time, the president has opposed efforts to ban gay marriage at the state level, saying that he did not favor attempts to strip rights away from gay and lesbian couples.