Tammy Baldwin On Obama’s Marriage Stance: “I Have No Idea What Goes On In Another Person’s Mind”

Look, he is moving in the right direction on this issue. He’s been crucial in equality efforts like the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell and signing the Matthew Shepard hate crimes prevention act. I have no idea what goes on in another person’s mind. As a legislator, I need to be good at persuading people, counting votes and getting to 50 percent plus one. I don’t go back and say, “Why did this person get to the right position?” It’s only “Are you ‘yes’ or are you ‘no’?”

Out Senate hopeful Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), on President Obama’s slow evolution on marriage equality, to Andrew Goldman in The New York Times Magazine.

Photo: Congresswoman Tammy Baldwin

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  • the crustybastard

    When a man doesn’t believe that a person unlike himself is his social equal or deserves to have the same legal rights and privileges as he does, it’s really not unclear what’s going on in that man’s mind.

    But we can’t call Barack Obama a bigot, can we? No. Of course not.

    I don’t know what that elephantine thing in the room is, but it certainly is not an elephant. Nothing to see here. Move along, citizen.

  • 1equalityUSA

    Dear Crustybastard, I may be the biggest sap in the world to believe that President Obama will “evolve” more fully after he’s reelected to office. How frustrating it must be for Obama to know, in his heart, what the right thing to do is and not be able to be hard-nosed about it. Jefferson, an owner of many slaves, ran into this when he “evolved” and attempted to undo the damage legislatively, with little success. The people just weren’t ready to hear what he had to say. I suspect that Obama is aware that being truthful about his desire for equality may be political suicide. Santorum or that other fear-biter yapper will find themselves at the helm, if this politician doesn’t show restraint. I cannot see how LGBT (or all women) would benefit from a Republican in the White House. The third party candidate will likely have their day in the sun, but not this November. Politicians prefer to have the courts handle these unpleasantries, as it takes the burden off of their cowardly shoulders. I resent having my vote coerced. I can’t believe Santorum or that other fear-biter yapper are so close to being the Republicans’ choice of President, mind blowing what that out of touch party dredged up. Though I cannot convince myself to fork over dollars to Dems, my vote will be coerced towards the least awful of the bunch. Obama needs to “evolve” faster, but ego would have him announce, magnanimously, that he is for marriage equality when so many are chomping at the bit to reverse our progress. It will happen with the courts, not politicians.

  • Jake

    While a state senator in Illinois, Obama was pro marriage equality. He had to change his official position because he wouldn’t be electable with that stance. As such, he became pro civil unions.

    Obama feared that he would face the rejection and firestorm that Bill Clinton encountered in the first days of his presidency when he tried to end anti-gay discrimination in the military.

    Ultimately, Obama ended DADT, passed the Matthew Shepard/James Bird anti-bias legislation, and hired a bunch of gay staff members.

    Can he do more? Heck yes. But, as he’s said repeatedly, he’s playing a long game. He doesn’t feel that he can get all the programs and legislation he wants quickly.

    We all know that if McCain had won, he would not have done anything for LGBT Americans. None. Zip. Nada.

    We also know that the GOP candidates are happy to take away gay rights based on their commitments to the Christian right.

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