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Entries in Lesbian (3)

Thursday
Feb092012

Obama, No Same-Sex Marriage Supporter, Raises Cash at Lesbian Couple's Home

SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- President Obama, who has opposed same-sex marriage but is said to be “evolving” on the issue, is attending a fundraiser Thursday at the home of a lesbian couple whose 2008 Chicago nuptials were described in a local paper as the “wedding of the season.”

Obama will collect an estimated $1.4 million for his re-election campaign from an intimate group of around 40 gay and lesbian supporters at the home of Karen Dixon and Dr. Nan Schaffer in Washington, D.C., according to a campaign official.

Dixon and Schaffer, transplants from Chicago, held a wedding ceremony in July 2008 with hundreds of guests attending from all across the country, according to an account in the Windy City Times.   

But their marriage was not afforded the same legal recognition and benefits as heterosexual couples because same-sex marriage is not legal in Illinois. (It’s unclear whether the couple has filed for a legal marriage certificate in D.C., where gay marriage is now performed. The couple could not be reached for comment.)

Obama has remained mum on his view on whether couples such as Dixon and Schaffer should be able to legally wed in states across the country, preferring instead to let each state decide for itself.

“I think it’s important for us to work through these issues because each community is going to be different, each state is going to be different,” he said in June after New York became the sixth and largest state to legalize same-sex marriage. Washington state this week became the seventh.

The position -- a new twist for Obama, who appeared to support legalizing the unions in 1996, later opposed them and most recently said his views are “evolving” -- has rankled advocates who say the president is making a calculated political decision with an eye toward 2012.

He has, however, opposed the federal Defense of Marriage Act and opposes a federal marriage amendment to the Constitution.

“The president’s position on these issues writ large are well known,” White House press secretary Jay Carney said this week. “You know his position, where it stands now, on the position of same-sex marriage. I don’t have much to add on that.”

Asked whether Obama supports marriages like that between Dixon and Schaffer and whether their marriage in Chicago should have been afforded the same rights and privileges as those given to heterosexual couples, Obama campaign spokesman Ben LaBolt offered the following comment:

“The President has long opposed a Federal Marriage Amendment, supported the repeal of DOMA, and been clear that this was a matter that states should decide.”

Schaffer is a veterinary doctor who specializes in rhinoceros reproduction, according to her biography in the Chicago Gay and Lesbian Hall of Fame. She is also a philanthropist, political activist and co-founder of the Windy City Media Group.

Dixon is an attorney and LGBT community advocate.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Jun302011

Senators Release ‘It Gets Better’ Video

Creatas Images/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- Thirteen democratic Senators released their contribution to the It Gets Better Project, a video campaign aimed at preventing suicide among bullied lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender youth.

“In my view these videos are saving lives,” said Sen. Chris Coons, D-Del., in a press conference Thursday.

The video unveiled Wednesday features Senators Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.), Chris Coons (D-Del.), Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), Al Franken (D-Minn.), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.), Mark Udall (D-Colo.), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.), and Ron Wyden (D-Ore.). The senators began working on it about two months ago, said Coons.

Sen. Gillibrand states her support of gay marriage in the video.  Last week, New York became the largest state to legalize gay marriage.

“Every loving couple should have the right to be married, to be able to celebrate that love, that commitment with all of their friends and loved ones around,” says Gillibrand.

“Sexual orientation should not be a factor in a person's access to equality,” says Sen. Feinstein at another point in the video.

“And it certainly shouldn’t be the policy of the United States government,” adds Coons.

“It is a really an incredible moment for the campaign,” said Scott Zumwalt, project manager of the It Gets Better Project, “and something we couldn't imagine happening ten months ago.”

Since launching last September, the campaign has received more than 20,000 videos from lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender adults. The project’s YouTube channel also includes videos from President Obama, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Democratic Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and the Chicago Cubs.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Jun232011

Day After Afghan Troop Announcement, Obama Heads to Fort Drum

JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- The day after delivering his strategy to begin withdrawing troops from Afghanistan, President Obama will visit troops at Fort Drum in upstate New York, which has sent thousands of soldiers to fight in Afghanistan.

The president will spend time with members of the elite 10th Mountain Division, one of the most frequently deployed divisions to Afghanistan. Obama will also meet privately with Gold Star families who have lost loved ones in combat. More than 1,500 U.S. service members have died in the war in Afghanistan.

There are currently 100,000 U.S. troops serving in Afghanistan. Wednesday night, the president announced that starting next month, he is bringing 10,000 U.S. troops home from Afghanistan by the end of this year and another 23,000 by the end of next summer, several months earlier than originally anticipated.

Thursday evening Obama will pivot to campaign mode in New York City, where he will deliver remarks at three DNC fundraisers, including one to Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender supporters.

The president will overnight in Pittsburgh, where on Friday he will deliver a speech on manufacturing and job creation from Carnegie Mellon University.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio







ABC News Radio