Earlier Wednesday, President Barack Obama made headlines with his announcement in an ABC interview that he supported gay marriage.
The President reversed his long-standing opposition to the concept and said that his decision was an “evolution” on the subject. He said conversations with his staff members, openly gay and lesbian service members, and his wife and daughters changed his mind.
“I have to tell you that over the course of several years as I have talked to friends and family and neighbors, when I think about members of my own staff who are in incredibly committed monogamous relationships, same-sex relationships, who are raising kids together; when I think about those soldiers or airmen or marines or sailors who are out there fighting on my behalf and yet feel constrained, even now that 'don't ask, don't tell' is gone, because they are not able to commit themselves in a marriage, at a certain point I've just concluded that for me personally it is important for me to go ahead and affirm that I think same sex couples should be able to get married,” Obama said.
Kelly Dudzik with our con
tent partner, Fox 16 News, gauged local reaction to the news. She reports:
“I think it's a turning point, and I was very happy that President Obama did that,” says State Representative Kathy Webb.
Webb is the first openly gay elected official in Arkansas history. Wednesday's presidential announcement in support of same-sex marriage makes her proud.
“All we want is to be treated equally, and I don't think that's something that's too much to ask,” says Webb.
“It was no surprise whatsoever when I saw on the news today that he indeed came out and said 'I support same-sex marriage,'” says Jerry Cox with the Family Council.
The conservative Little Rock-based Family Council believes strongly marriage is between one man and one woman.
“Not politically smart. At least, not for a state like Arkansas where three out of four people have already voted and said that they oppose same-sex marriage,” says Cox of Obama's statement.
You can read more from Fox 16 News at this link.