nowfocus wrote:Obama stopped defending DOMA, repealed DADT, and appointed openly gay men to be social secretary and to a senior position in the military, reinstated LGBT month, came out in support of bullied gay teens, and filmed an 'it gets better video'.
He picks the fights he can win, and he can't win this one right now. Gay marriage is only going to get more popular, and when the support is there he will work hard to pass it.
Even in the wake of the NY bill, it seems unlikely that any president could get a federal marriage equality bill through Congress by the start of 2017. How many of the marriage equality bills that have passed so far would have succeeded if they required a 60% supermajority? New York's wouldn't have, and I'm sure some of the others wouldn't have either. Even in 2009 when there were 60 Democrats (including the 2 Independents) in the Senate, it was inconceivable that any amount of political capital could've made progress on such a bill. Ignoring that some supporters would say it's a state issue and they'd support it at a state level but not as a federal mandate, there simply weren't 60 votes in favor. And that was in a Senate that was far more Democratic than any time since the late 70s, and was probably more Democratic than anytime in the foreseeable future (big Democratic gains in 06 and 08 mean they have many more seats to defend in 12 and 14, and fewer pickup opportunities). Hell, even the Pelosi-controlled House, which passed plenty of progressive legislation that they knew didn't have a chance in the Senate didn't take up a same-sex marriage bill, much less pass it.
So while I do expect him to come out in favor of same-sex marriage sometime in his second term, I don't think he'll ever work hard to pass it. But that's not because he doesn't support it, but because it seems highly unlikely he could possibly expect success on that issue. And so rationally he'll conserve his efforts for places where has a chance of changing the law. And if by some chance it does turn out that a marriage equality bill has a reasonable chance, I really believe that Obama will fully support it and work hard to see it passed.