Lawmakers React to Obama's Same-Sex Marriage Support
WASHINGTON, DC (WENY) President Barack Obama is receiving praise and criticism for his announcement Wednesday that he now supports same-sex marriage.
The news was all over the political newspapers in Washington with headlines like "Obama shifts, backs same-sex marriage” and "Gay marriage debate evolves" – a play on the president’s own. WENY-TV News spoke with Southern Tier congressman Tom Reed on Thursday. He maintains his stance that marriage is between a man and a woman. Although, he does agree with the president that the issue should be left up to the states. He also says the same-sex marriage debate is taking away from other things that need to get done in Washington.
"I think this is a political maneuver clearly designed for political purposes in the sense of making it an issue in the November 2012 presidential race,” said Reed. “I think we need to keep focused on the immediate threat -- and that's this national debt and the economy."
Meanwhile, Democratic Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand is praising the president's announcement. She says, "The president's unequivocal support in favor of all committed couples to marry the person they love is a watershed moment in American history that will provide the leadership needed to finally repeal Defense of Marriage Act and win the unfinished fight for equality for all Americans.”
Gillibrand also says the president's support of the LGBT community goes back to when he was running for president in 2008 and promises to repeal the Don't Ask, Don't Tell policy. The President made due on that promise last year.