Ezra Klein may well sigh: "Obama’s real pitch to the gay community: He’s not Mitt Romney."
But, given how little power the president has on marriage, that's enough for me. Romney is virulently anti-gay, and could not stand up to even the most rancid of homophobes in Bryan Fischer. His church, moreover, is brutal in its hostility. I have some personal experience of this. I dated an ex-Mormon several years ago. He went to BYU and as he ventured out to gay bars, the university sent out spies to track his movements. They intimidated and bullied him. When he tested positive for HIV, they disowned him. I went to his funeral. Even his family wouldn't show up. There are many Mormons fighting this, and I've been honored to speak with and to them over the years. But they are fighting against an institution which enshrines eternal male-female marriage in ways other faiths don't.
I'm disappointed in Obama, but his leading from behind is not exactly a surprise at this point. And after the end of DADT and withdrawing from a legal defense of DOMA, he's done a huge amount. But the idea that there is some kind of equivalence between his cynical waffling and Romney's rank hostility to gay people's equality is preposterous.
Get the best of the Mercury each week in your inbox!