Wednesday, May 9, 2012
The Right Wing
Probably the only group of Americans that will obviously criticize Obama's evolved position. We can expect that this will be the loudest if not only crowd who will bring this issue up as the election looms upon us. This is not really a bad thing per say, these people have always criticized Obama on other issues (like birth control, energy, and so on) that their resentment on this issue really does not matter anymore. The right wing was not, and is not, going to support Obama for a second bid anyway, so Obama's decision to come out for gay marriage was a no-brainer regarding the right wing -- they hate Obama and everything he does and they hate gay marriage, so there is nothing here to lose or gain partially because social conservatives and the religious right already think that Obama is doing an awful job defending their traditional "values."
Already we see the immediate consequences of Obama's endorsement of gay marriage: more gay dollars. Within 90 minutes after announcing his personal support for gay marriage Obama received more than $1 Million in campaign donations. We can expect this consequence, if you want to call it that, to continue to rise well into the election as the Obama campaign is in dire need of more campaign cash. The campaign can expect to make at least $8-$10 million just on the gay marriage issue alone. Also this might erase all the recent bad memories when Obama refused to sign an ENDA executive order barring federal contractors from discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation which have lead to many gay donors refusing to donate.
Black voters are a very important voting bloc for Obama as it helped carry him over in the 2008 elections. This year this voting bloc will be highly regarded by the Obama camp as well, but it is common knowledge that on average black voters oppose gay marriage more than other racial groups and any other group of the liberal democratic base. Some have question whether or not Obama will lose black votes because of his now official public support for gay marriage. We do not think this will likely happen. We think that black voters will continue to support Obama due to the fact that many other events (like the Treyvon Martin shooting and voter ID laws) have turned black voters off from voting GOP and have left them with a bad taste in their mouths. We conclude that Obama will retain the black vote because the black vote cannot trust a GOP contender like Mitt Romney. In the end black voters will vote against gay marriage but will vote for Obama and what they perceived as "their interests" even if he supports gay marriage. We do not think however that there will be an immediate change in black support for gay marriage after Obama's endorsement.
After Obama's official blessing of gay marriage the democratic party will go through some rapid changes. Expect the gay marriage plank that is being kicked around to be taken more seriously as we predict that such plank will eventually become part of the democratic platform this year since Obama's endorsement has made it a lot easier to do so. We also expect more cabinet members, democratic leaders and politicians to fall in line with Obama and come out for gay marriage during this election season and after. We also expect a lot more pressure on democrats that are either opposed or have not spoken on the issue yet to also follow Obama's lead.
Youth and Liberal Base
We think that some elements of the liberal base and the youth may be more energized to back Obama after his announcement supporting gay marriage. We don't think, however, that such resurgence in the base maybe enough for a solid Obama win. There are other issues that Obama has failed on (mainly civil liberties, the war, healthcare, and financial reform) that have alienated many in the base. We don't think gay marriage alone will fully energize his base at 2008 levels but it might fuel some elements loud enough to make some noise, whether that noise will be loud enough to lift the base is still yet to be seen.
Since Obama is the leader of the most richest country in the world (for now), his support for gay marriage is resonating globally and creating some impact. We will expect to see more pressure on other leaders to also come out for gay marriage and we can expect to see some of these leaders come out for gay marriage soon as well. There might be some change in United Nations attitude towards gay marriage but of course this will not include the many African and Islamic nations. Gay marriage will now be viewed in a different light in many nations and it will take a more serious tone since Obama's popularity is still higher internationally than it is domestically.
So what about the election? We think that if Obama were to lose the election it would be due to the economy as this country is experiencing a recession and some predict that there will be another one this year. If he loses we think that some social conservatives will pin his loss on his support for gay marriage, however this will be further from the truth.
Its the economy stupid.