"His personal opinion is women should be admitted," White House press secretary Jay Carney said of Obama in a press briefing.

The Georgia club, where the Masters golf tournament began on Thursday morning, was founded in 1933 and has never accepted female members. This year, one of the professional tournament’s corporate sponsors, technology company IBM, appointed a woman as its chief executive. The CEOs of the tournament's corporate sponsors have traditionally been offered a complimentary membership in the club, but Virginia Rometty has not yet been offered one.

Front-runner Mitt Romney also weighed in from the campaign trail later in the day.
"Well, of course," Romney said, according to multiple sources. “Of course I'd have women in Augusta. Sure."

Both Carney and Romney noted that the club has a right to make its own decisions on the matter.

The GOP presidential candidates have often used Obama’s avid golfing to take shots at him for spending too much time away from important economic issues.

Romney noted in responding to the topic Thursday that he’s not much of a golfer, and Gingrich informed the crowd at CPAC earlier this year that he is a "very bad golfer." But his wife, Callista, is a noted golfer, and has been playing since a young age.

She tweeted that she would “love” to belong to Augusta.