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Obama Weighs In: Should Women Should Be Admitted to Augusta?

Official White House Photo by Pete Souza(WASHINGTON) -- President Obama believes that women should be admitted to the all-male Augusta National Golf Club, White House Press Secretary Jay Carney told reporters Thursday.

“His personal opinion is that women should be admitted,” Carney said of the president. “It's obviously up to the club to decide.  But his personal opinion is that women should be admitted to the club.”

The prestigious Georgia club, which opened in 1933 and is home to the Masters, has never had a female member, although women can play as guests of members. This year’s Masters presents a unique challenge to the all-male membership policy. Tournament sponsor IBM has a new, female CEO, Virginia Rometty.

Carney did not know whether the president, an avid golfer, would ever agree to play at a course that discriminated against women, but reiterated that Obama “believes Augusta should admit women.”

“We are… long past the time when women should be excluded from anything,” Carney said.

Mitt Romney also weighed in Thursday on the debate over whether females should be able to become members of the Augusta National Golf Club. Asked after an event in northeastern Pennsylvania whether he believes the club should permit women members, Romney responded, “Yes.”

“Well of course. I’m not a member of Augusta,” he said. “I don’t know I would qualify – my golf game is not that good but certainly if I were a member and if I could run Augusta which isn’t likely to happen but of course I’d have women in Augusta, sure.”

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