Reports are coming in from the National Prayer Breakfast, where Sec. of State Hillary Clinton is addressing The Family’s large crowd of conservative political power players. And it’s there, citing Scripture, she’s telling the audience the Obama administration stands for human rights everywhere, specifically mentioning Uganda. She’s followed by President Obama, who also mentions Uganda, and says that while Americans may disagree about gay marriage, “odious laws that are being proposed, most recently in Uganda” should be condemned by everyone.
This follows the move by a gay Ugandan man, calling himself Moses, who showed up at National Prayer Hour press conference Tuesday wearing a paper bag over his head — to illustrate just how important it is for him to remain anonymous as he returns to a country where newspapers (like Red Pepper, which he held up to reporters) print the names and addresses of suspected gays. (See video.)
And it also follows a call from the Episcopal Rev. V. Gene Robinson for Obama to use today’s prayer event to highlight Uganda’s plight.
By our count, this marks Obama’s first public statement about Uganda’s Anti-Homosexuality Bill.
And it’s “barely” that — given the National Prayer Breakfast is actually closed to the press, aside from the traveling press pool that accompanies him most everywhere. Of course, statements from events like these always leak out; Twitter helps move things along. (CSPAN carried coverage of the event live; previous reports about the Breakfast indicated only the press pool would be allowed inside.) And while an event organized by The Family, with its ties to Uganda’s anti-gay faith leaders and politicians who are drumming up support for the bill, is the perfect place for Obama to deliver a message about the proposed law, it should not be the only place he does it.