Metro Weekly

Obama hopes Supreme Court makes the “right decision” on same-sex marriage

Barack Obama - Credit: Pete Souza/White House

Barack Obama – Photo: Pete Souza/White House

When the U.S. Supreme Court takes up the issue of same-sex marriage later this year, President Barack Obama hopes the nation’s highest court will make the “right decision.” During an interview on Thursday with one of three YouTube creators at the White House, Obama said he is hopeful the Supreme Court will recognize that there is “no good reason” to ban same-sex marriage.

“My hope is that they go ahead and recognize what I think the majority of people in America now recognize, which is two people who love each other and are treating each other with respect, and aren’t bothering anybody else, why would the law treat them differently?” Obama told YouTube creator GloZell Green. “There’s no good reason for it, and so as a consequence I’m hopeful the Supreme Court comes to the right decision.”

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Obama’s remarks come after he declared marriage equality a “civil right” during his State of the Union address Tuesday night.

Last week, the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to hear a consolidated case challenging same-sex marriage bans in four states — Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio and Tennessee — and address whether the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution prohibits states from banning same-sex marriage or recognition of same-sex marriages legally performed elsewhere. Following that announcement, outgoing Attorney General Eric Holder reaffirmed that the Justice Department would file a brief urging the Supreme Court “to make marriage equality a reality for all Americans.” Oral arguments are expected to be heard in April with a decision handed down by the court in June.

Obama announced his support for same-sex marriage in May 2012 after his administration ceased defending the constitutionality of the Defense of Marriage Act in February 2011. His administration later urged the Supreme Court to strike down DOMA and California’s Proposition 8.

“I will tell you peoples’ hearts have opened up on this issue,” the president said during Thursday’s interview. “I think people know that treating folks unfairly, even if you disagree with their lifestyle choice, the fact of the matter is they’re not bothering you. Let them live their lives and under the law they should be treated equally.

“And as far as me personally, just to see all the loving gay and lesbian couples that I know who are great parents and great partners, the idea that we would not treat them like the brothers and sisters they are, that doesn’t make any sense to me.”

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Justin Snow is Metro Weekly's former political editor and White House correspondent. Follow him on Twitter @JustinCSnow.