Video of Washington Governor Chris Gregoire shows Obama supported marriage equality in private before his May announcement
October 10, 2012
As Chris Geidner reported yesterday in BuzzFeed, President Obama was privately supportive of marriage equality before he made a public announcement of his support on ABC in May, according to a video of comments made by Washington Gov. Christine Gregoire that was posted online on Monday. Although the exact date of the video is unclear, Gregoire says in the clip that President Obama made his support known to her in February, when he visited Washington. From BuzzFeed:
“You have no idea how proud I am of you,” Gregoire said the president told her on the tarmac when he landed in Washington state on Feb. 17. She said he continued, saying, “Thank you for what you have done. History will be on our side. We will ensure equality in the United States. Congratulations, and thank you.”
The video was posted as a breaking news update by the anti-gay National Organization for Marriage with the headline “Breaking News: WA Gov. Christine Gregoire Reveals Obama Hid His True Position on Marriage for Months.” At the time of Obama’s comments to Gov. Gregoire, both Geidner and NOM point out, the administration declined to offer any update on the President’s views when it came to marriage equality.
As we know, President Obama’s public expression of support was in no small part precipitated by Vice President Joe Biden’s semi-slip up about marriage equality the weekend before. Still, the video of Gov. Gregoire posted by NOM demonstrates what many, many marriage advocates believed all along: that Obama’s support on marriage rights was a matter of when, not if. I’ve often felt that Obama has been playing an admittedly maddening but fundamentally powerful long game when it came to marriage equality. With the election only one month out, an election that will have enormous consequences for the lives of LGBT Americans, that’s an important thing to remember.