Pandering: the act of expressing one’s views in accordance with the likes of a group to which one is attempting to appeal. Pandering is essentially a reaction of panic in elected officials who must either tailor their views to public opinion or risk losing their existing political position.
Flip-Flop: a sudden or apparent change of policy or opinion by a public official. Often occurs during the period prior to or following an election in order to maximize a candidate’s popularity.
In 2004 then Senator Barack Obama expressed his position on marriage in an interview seen here:
“Mr. Obama, you’ve said that your religious faiths, your religious faith, dictates that marriage should be between a man and a woman. Would you elaborate on that?”
“Well, uh, I, what I believe is is that marriage is between a man and a woman…”
In 2008, at the Saddleback Presidential Candidate Forum, then presidential candidate Barack Obama was asked to define marriage.
“I believe that marriage, uh, is the union between a man and a woman. Now for me as a Christian it’s also a sacred union.”
While standing by this definition of marriage he went on to say that he would not support a constitutional definition of marriage as he defines it.
It’s clear that then presidential candidate Obama believed that marriage is a sacred union between a man and a woman. However, it is also clear that he feels that the gay community should have certain rights granted to them.
Since his inauguration Obama has shied away from this topic and has stated that his position on the matter is “evolving”.
So why has Obama made a sudden change now in support of gay marriage?
It was only until Vice President Joe Biden said in an interview that he feels comfortable with gay marriage that Obama was pushed into the spotlight forcing him to declare his position on gay marriage. http://www.boston.com/Boston/politicalintelligence/2012/05/vice-president-joe-biden-says-comfortable-with-gay-marriage-but-won-promise-endorsement-obama-administration/7L8FjHlNMmMNVw4DUi4j0J/story.html
After making this statement Biden apologized to Obama for putting him in the spotlight thus forcing him to take a position on gay marriage. http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/05/10/us-usa-biden-gaymarriage-idUSBRE8491NH20120510
Conveniently enough the mainstream media ran a story on Mitt Romney alleging that he bullied a gay student, John Lauber, in high school right after Obama announced his support for gay marriage. It seems the media made an attempt to make Romney look like a “backwards” candidate who needs to “evolve” and catch up on what the people want, just like Obama has done. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/05/10/mitt-romney-bullying-lord-of-the-flies_n_1507757.html
However, the family of said student has made a statement saying that the portrayal of their son is “factually incorrect” and that they are appalled that this administration would use their son to further their political agenda. http://themoderatevoice.com/146840/sister-of-alleged-romney-target-starting-to-dispute-parts-of-washington-post-story/
It seems Obama has purposely waited to disclose his stance on gay marriage when it would matter most, during his reelection bid. So, is this what Obama meant when he said his stance had been “evolving?”
Furthermore, after making his announcement on gay marriage Obama set out to pander to his new crowd of potential voters by asking for donations. http://politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com/2012/05/09/after-marriage-announcement-obama-makes-money-pitch/
The question now arises, is this President using the gay community to further his own political career? In the mind of this writer, it would appear so.
It seems this President does not really care about the gay community unless he can use them to help him get re-elected.
We all know Mitt Romney’s view on gay marriage and many approve of it and many don’t.
But at least with Romney he is not avoiding the issue until it is politically expedient to reveal his stance or using it to gain votes and money for his campaign.
Americans’ views on same-sex marriage: http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2012/05/14/us/americans-views-on-same-sex-marriage-poll.html