Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Obama Just Lost My Vote

I have been concerned with several of Obama's statements over the last few weeks, but was willing to hear him out to judge the whole package. Obama is wrong on the one issue I am not willing to negotiate on:
As your President, I will use the bully pulpit to urge states to treat same-sex couples with full equality in their family and adoption laws. I personally believe that civil unions represent the best way to secure that equal treatment. But I also believe that the federal government should not stand in the way of states that want to decide on their own how best to pursue equality for gay and lesbian couples — whether that means a domestic partnership, a civil union, or a civil marriage. Unlike Senator Clinton, I support the complete repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) – a position I have held since before arriving in the U.S. Senate. While some say we should repeal only part of the law, I believe we should get rid of that statute altogether. Federal law should not discriminate in any way against gay and lesbian couples, which is precisely what DOMA does. I have also called for us to repeal Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, and I have worked to improve the Uniting American Families Act so we can afford same-sex couples the same rights and obligations as married couples in our immigration system.
I am personally convinced that society has a vested interest in the health of marriage as an institution. So many of the problems I have seen, both in Philadelphia and from studies I have read, are traceable to a lack of fathers in the home. Gay marriage undermines all the incentives society can give to heterosexual couples. It opens the whole system to gaming: people will fake gay marriage just for the benefits, thereby eliminating all benefits to everyone.
(h/t EFM)


WhiteEyebrows said...

For reals... where is our conservative Obama? Someone who can talk a good game & inspire people just like Obama, but who is dead right on the issues.

Dennis said...


I disagree with Obama (mostly) on this issue. And I respect that you would vote for Romney on principle.

However, I'm not sure what I think about your connection with Obama's policies in this regard and the disintegration of heterosexual marriage as we know it. I don't see a repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act as opposing the defense of marriage (even heterosexual marriage).

Civil unions might not be much difference in your book (and I'm still not sure what I think about them), but I don't see Obama as coming out to support gay marriage (in fact, he has specifically said that he is opposed to gay marriage). I'd be curious to hear more, though, about why you think "gay marriage undermines all the incentives society can give to heterosexual couples." I'm against gay marriage, but I'm not sure what I think about your comment here. For one, I wonder whether economic incentives should motivate people to marry? If people are not willing to marry without government incentives, then I think they shouldn't be marrying at all. Giving marriage incentives for people who otherwise wouldn't marry does little to defend what marriage ought to be. (I've never quite understood why mere marriage, not considering children, should make a difference economically.)

I'm also not clear on why you think that civil unions will make a difference regarding fatherless problems in places like Philadelphia. As a side note, I see Obama as the best candidate in terms of advocating for fathers in the home. You can check it out on his website. (Also, conservative economic policies have never really helped in regards to this problem. Big business does little to address to the moral issues in inner cities.)

Another thing to consider is that it is highly improbable that there will ever be a constitutional amendment against gay marriage (the time was ripe a few years ago, and it still came up short). It really is going to come down to individual states, and I see Obama as simply affirming that, rather than encouraging it (when it comes to bonafide "gay marriage" anyway).