House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) supports the 2012 Democratic Party platform including, for the first time, language in full support of marriage equality, her spokesman told Metro Weekly on Tuesday evening, Feb. 14.
The former House speaker’s support for the move comes in response to Freedom to Marry’s announcement on Feb. 13 that it was launching a campaign to ask the Democrats, as the group put it, to “Say I Do” to including such a marriage equality plank in the party’s platform.
The platform, a detailed statement of the party’s positions that will be finalized at the Democratic National Convention this September, has never included language in support of the right of same-sex couples to marry. And the leader of the party, President Obama, opposed marriage equality in the 2008 campaign. He said in December 2010 that his position on marriage equality was “evolving” but that he still “struggle[s]” with it. His press secretary, Jay Carney, said this past week of Obama’s position, “You know his position, where it stands now, on the issue of same-sex marriage, so I really don’t have much to add on that.”
Notwithstanding Obama’s “evolving” position, the Obama administration is the first administration to openly embrace LGBTQ rights with respectful outspokenness, refuse to defend DOMA, and repeal DADT. It would be great if the Democratic Party Platform embraced full marriage equality, given that a majority of Americans support marriage equality.
Of course, the Republicans would milk such an “endorsement” to fuel the culture wars, but people are more concerned about the economy than with whether some LGBTQ folks want to run with the mainstream with regard to the antiquated institution of marriage. Though Pelosi’s comments are encouraging, let’s not forget that marriage equality is not the only civil rights goal for LGBTQ folk. We have a long way to go with regard to inclusivity for all LGBTQ folks in all contexts.