The conservative gay advocacy group GOProud had harsh words for President Barack Obama for claiming in 2004 that his religious faith leads him to believe marriage is between a man and a woman, and “not a civil right.”
Obama made those assertions during a debate with Alan Keyes when the two men were running against each other for an Illinois U.S. Senate seat.
“What I believe is that marriage is between a man and a woman. … What I believe, in my faith, is that a man and a woman, when they get married, are performing something before God, and it’s not simply the two persons who are meeting,” Obama said in video footage uploaded to YouTube on Tuesday.
“That doesn’t mean that that necessarily translates into a position on public policy or with respect to civil unions,” he continued. “What it does mean is that we have a set of traditions in place that, I think, need to be preserved. But I also think we need to make sure that gays and lesbians have the same set of basic rights that are in place.”
In his run for the Illinois state senate eight years earlier, however, Obama had endorsed legalizing gay marriage at a time when it was still an obscure niche issue.
It’s a flip-flop that has led gay-rights supporters and others to question Obama’s sincerity on the issue, including GOProud’s Chris Barron. He told The Daily Caller that the only religion Obama is concerned with when it comes to gay marriage is “the religion of politics.”
“The religion that has guided Obama on the issue of same-sex marriage is not a religion practiced in any church on Sunday, though it is a very old one, it is the religion known as politics,” Barron said. (RELATED: Gay group starts petition to force Dems to move contention out of NC)
“It is time the left came to terms with the fact that this president will only be for same-sex marriage when he believes it is a political winner for him.”
“What a profile in courage from the self-described ‘fierce advocate’ for gay people,” Barron added.
Obama, in fact, may have decided gay marriage has finally become a political winner. On Wednesday he told ABC News that he supports legalizing the practice.