For now it seems as if Democrats running for office are behind marriage equality.
The site Politico has an interesting tidbit of where the Democratic Party is headed regarding same sex marriage. On Friday, 25 May, Democratic candidates in the north-eastern state of New Jersey met in debate. All six are vying to represent the 10th District. When asked if they supported marriage equality all replied yes.
In the mid-western state of Wisconsin another Democrat, Milwaukee mayor Tom Barrett, is running in a recall election against Gov. Scott Walker. In their recent debate, Barrett announced his support for gay marriage.
These two snippets of debate chatter are important for the following reasons: 1) when he was a representative in the 1990s, Barrett voted for the Defense of Marriage Act, a law that denies any federal recognition of gay unions, and 2) the six candidates running for the 10th want to represent a district whose voters are predominately African-American. As reported by the Pew Research Center, 49 percent of blacks are opposed to gay marriage.
While it’s way too early to make any political predictions, President Barack Obama’s support for gay couples makes it easier for other Democrats to do the same. However, as an Associated Press article notes, what really counts are elections. While Democratic politicians and polls might support gay marriage, the institution has consistently failed at the ballot box.