A top adviser for President Obama’s campaign said Sunday he was unsure whether Democrats would run on a platform of same-sex marriage for the 2012 election.
Robert Gibbs, a former White House spokesman, said he had not talked to Obama yet about the possibility of bringing the issue of same-sex marriage rights into focus as a main issue leading up to November’s elections.
“I think we all look to and want to live in a world where, if you're applying for a job or doing anything, you're not judged on your sexual orientation. You shouldn't be. And I think living in a society where that doesn't happen is a society we all want to live.”
Gibbs’s comments come as the same-sex marriage debate continues to heat up within state governments and the Obama administration took an additional step this week in support of gay rights.
The Department of Justice issued a letter on Friday to House leaders, saying it will not defend sections of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) that prevent same-sex couples from receiving military benefits.
Attorney General Eric Holder said the section of DOMA in question, which is being challenged in the federal case McLaughlin vs. Panetta, violates the equal protection clause in the Fifth Amendment.
The letter follows the Obama administration’s decision last year not to defend DOMA, a law that says states and the federal government do not have to recognize same-sex marriages. President Obama has called the law unconstitutional.
House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) responded last year by hiring a private law firm to defend DOMA.